Dr. Karin Bump of Saddle Up NY! announced today that New York will be included as a State breakout in the American Horse Council’s Equine Economic Impact Study. With a ‘right at the finish line’ boom of industry support, commitments and contributions reached the $25,000 mark for New York to be included in the states commissioning ‘break out’ studies. State ‘breakout studies’ are companion studies to the National Equine Economic Impact Study done through the American Horse Council (AHC). In addition to the state study, support from the Long Island equine community has secured a companion regional study to look more specifically at the economic impact in Long Island.
Economic Impact studies provide essential data to tell the story of impact and value of the equine industry. “Equine farms are an essential part of New York agriculture. The jobs, economic activity, and recreation they provide the state, and their local communities, are significant, and the impact study will help quantify that importance,” said Renée St. Jacques, New York Farm Bureau’s Associate Director of Public Policy.
National Economic Impact Studies of the US horse industry have been conducted by American Horse Council for close to 50 years. The most recent study, completed in 2017, included New York as a state breakout with funding provided by New York’s thoroughbred racing industry stakeholders during a critical time in their history and planning. When Dr. Karin Bump of Saddle Up NY! realized that a new AHC study was close to launching, and New York was missing a mechanism to fund participation, she turned to the Saddle Up NY! industry partners to determine the level of priority for this study.
“From the start, everyone agreed that economic impact data is critical and that a new study was needed. The challenge was how to fund it,” said Karin Bump, Founder of Saddle Up NY! The decision was made to turn to a grass roots approach reaching out to key stakeholders for commitments across various sectors of the industry with a later addition of a GoFundMe campaign for broader support. Key industry contributions came from New York Thoroughbred Breeding and Development Fund, New York Thoroughbred Breeders, Old Field Farm, Ltd, Blue Chip Farm, John Madden Sales, Cornell University Hospital for Animals, New York Farm Bureau, New York State Horse Council, Karin Bump and Timothy Williams, Sally Lynch, Kent Nutrition, and Triple Crown Nutrition.
First out of the gate with support for the study was the Thoroughbred racing sector of the industry with the Thoroughbred Breeding and Development Fund providing the largest of the industry commitments at $6,000. “The NYS Thoroughbred Breeding and Development Fund is proud to be the major contributor to this study which is important to all segments of the equine industry in New York,” said Tracy Egan, Executive Director. “For the past 50 years, the Breeding Fund has been watching over up to 400 Thoroughbred breeding farms which have employed tens of thousands of people while supporting NY Agriculture with purchases of hay, straw, and feed. Further, the Fund has provided hundreds of thousands of dollars for Thoroughbred Aftercare facilities which in turn provide mounts for everything from trail riding to dressage in NY,” said Tracy Egan.
New York Thoroughbred Breeders, Inc. was also quick to offer support. “For each person directly involved in the equine industry, we’ve long been aware of the positive impact horses provide in jobs and economic dollars across the state. With representatives from all sectors of New York’s equine industry partnering to fund an updated study of the 2017 American Horse Council Report, it will allow us to continue to champion New York’s vast equine industry with up-to-date stats and figures.” said Najja Thompson, Executive Director of New York Thoroughbred Breeders, Inc.
Blue Chip Farms in Wallkill, NY, dedicated to excellence in Standardbreds, Thoroughbreds and Sport Horses, is representative of the variety of sectors of the industry coming together to support this study “As the steward of 650 acres in Ulster County and home to 400 horses, Blue Chip farms has employed over 30 people and bought hundreds of tons of hay, feed, and local services for over 50 years,” said Tom Grossman owner of Blue Chip Farm. “To support that infrastructure, we have diversified into many different breeds of horses pursuing varied disciplines. We look forward to seeing economic data across the equine industries to highlight the mutually beneficial relationship of the equine industries to the environment and economy of New York State.”
Dr. Sally Lynch of Old Field Farm, Ltd., a nonprofit that operates an historic show grounds on Long Island, provided significant help in securing the final commitments to fully fund the study. “The overwhelming response to successfully fund the NYS Equine Impact Study not only shows how our equine industry deeply cares, but also inspires us all to participate in this critically important study. Whether it is our livelihoods, lifestyle or passion, we must all participate in promoting and protecting our equine industry and its legacy,” said Dr. Lynch.
The study is anticipated to launch in April and run through September. This includes key time frames for capturing data from horse shows, summer camps, county and state fairs. In addition, it’s prime time for the Thoroughbred and Standardbred racing sectors. “ Everyone involved with equine in NY will play a role in the success of this study – by completing the survey, encouraging others to complete it, and helping spread the word whenever, and wherever, there are equine events and activities across New York,” said Dr. Bump. Saddle Up NY! will be sharing AHC produced media toolkits to help to spread the word about the study and the importance of completing the survey. For more information on the study, please visit the AHC website: horsecouncil.org
Dr. Karin Bump is a passionate educator and change agent with a career trajectory that includes 28 years as a professor in equine studies and business management and four years as an Executive Director within the Cornell Cooperative Extension system. She is a member of the Extension Horses work team, an Impact Collaborative facilitator through eXtension, and a small business owner. Karin, along with her husband Tim Williams, founded launched the Saddle Up NY. As a team, Karin and Tim have launched several other education and outreach initiatives including the National Association of Equine Affiliated Academics (NAEAA), the Equine Education Network (equusfoundation.org), and The World of Horses exhibit at the NYS Fair.
Saddle Up NY! was launched in 2022 as an initiative to accelerate the success and growth of the NYS Equine Industry through delivery of promotion, connection and education activities and materials that strengthen existing initiatives and launch efforts to reach new audiences and markets. You can learn more about the initiative at: www.SaddleUpNY.com
Contact: Karin Bump
Saddle Up NY!