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Irish sport horse industry on the up

The sport horse industry in Ireland is growing but needs to address fragmentation and development issues, according to a recent report.

Irish Sport Horse Industry, Analysis and Recommendations, released last week, was produced by University College Dublin as part of the development of the sport horse industry, led by new umbrella body Horse Sport Ireland. It is the first of its kind on the industry.

In December 2005, there were 110,000 sport horses and ponies in Ireland, making the country the most densely populated with sport horses in Europe. An estimated 53,000 people are regularly involved in the industry, which boosts the Irish economy by an estimated €400million per year.

But a number of key issues were identified, including fragmentation of the industry, elite horse and rider development, facilities and the genetic improvement of the Irish Sport Horse.

This news report was first published in Horse & Hound (8 March, ’07)

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