SARATOGA COUNTY —Cornell Cooperative Extension Equine (CCE Equine) is excited to announce the soft launch of The Horse Farm Improvement Program (HFIP) that aims to help horse farms improve their operations. CCE Equine will be assisting to continue this program created by Cornell University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) and hopes horse farms of all types will find opportunities to benefit from.
The Horse Farm Improvement Program (HFIP) will use a pre-visit questionnaire in combination with on-farm evaluations to assess how equine farms are performing in eight different categories: horse health, biosecurity, human safety, manure management, nutrient management, sustainability, facilities, and business management. After a farm has completed its assessment, HFIP will identify potential areas of improvement and offer the farm advice on how to most efficiently use its resources for maximum benefit.
This program is unique because assessments are based on best-management practices (BMPs) recognized in scientific literature while recognizing that every facility is unique in its objectives. The program plans to work with farm owners to offer individualized guidance on a case-by-case basis.
The program is currently under development by intern Sydney Sill under the supervision of Lindsay Goodale, DVM and Brieanna Hughes, CCE Equine coordinator at CCE Saratoga. Sydney is a rising junior majoring in Animal Science at Cornell University, with provisional acceptance to start vet school at Cornell during her senior year. In the meantime, she is excited to take the lead on HFIP this summer as an alternative way to pursue her goal of helping local farms and horses. Ultimately the goal is to extend the program to all horse farms in New York state.