One out of every 63 Americans are involved with horses. Two million people in the U. S. own over 9.2 million horses (American Horse Council Foundation, 2005). Over four million People are involved in the horse industry in one way or another. The economic impact of the horse industry is $39 billion annually. The 2002 census of Agriculture reveals women as the primary operator of over 65 % of all horse farms. Women on a whole are operating a higher number of U. S. farms (USDA/ERS 2006). A business structure, business plan, and the ability to compile accurate records are vital instruments for a successful horse farm. The USDA classifies a farm as “an operation that sells at least $1,000 of agricultural products in a year”. A women-owned horse farm can be counted as a farm if they sell horses and operate like a farm. Training seminars in; farm management accounting, economics of buying versus raising horses to sell, earning additional income by teaching, training and boarding, and the importance of marketing and branding farm products educate women horse farmers with a formula for success. Women primarily operate small acreage farms. Increasing the number of women-owned horse farms fills a growing need for small specialized farming operations and meets the increasing regional and national demand for horse products.
|2008 National Women in Agriculture Educators Conference