Sunday, February 24, 2008

Horse-breeding the French way - Full Story

In France, the national stud farms [Les Haras nationaux], founded by Colbert in 1665, are responsible for promoting and developing horse-breeding and activities related to horses, in partnership with other public and private bodies.
By Alix Maupin, journalist

In the area of breeding, rigorous conservation of breeds, expertise in animal care and technical progress through the collection and processing of economic information are riding high. This is not excessive in order to manage about 500,000 members of the horse family in France (which is eight for every 1,000 inhabitants) among which 41 breeds of horse, donkey and ponies are recognized and bred.

Determination to preserve breed diversity

The national stud farms make their skills permanently available to horse breeders and users in every region. They contribute to a policy of balanced national land management by providing high quality technical support services. They have devised a system of identification and information and meet the needs expressed by breeders’ associations in the area of genetic improvement, notably through public standardization," explains their managing director, Christian Ferte.

Since its creation, this institution has constantly evolved, often working against the tide of fashion of the day, with the determination to preserve breed diversity and the specific features of French horse-breeding...


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