AQHA World Show is over, the reiners are next in Oklahoma City next week.
After attending both horse sales, and also last years, the big $$ seem to be in the "European markets and Mexico"... Have you also been to other "big sales" and noticed US horse's are in demand? The western breeding stock disciplines of reiners & cutters bring the most interest. What other disciplines are going over seas?
Currently, the stock horse breeds are the biggest market heading across the pond. Paints, Quarter Horses and Appaloosas are popular with some of the more colorful breeds REALLY standing out. Italy and Germany are probably the biggest importers these days.
Has anyone on this forum broken into that market? Do you need a agent?
You don't need an agent, but it helps with regards to finding your niche market. An agent can just simply be someone in Europe that is breeding your particular breed and knows the market. You will also need a location to store the frozen semen over there that has the capabilities to distribute throughout the EU if you are planning on shipping frozen.
Frozen semen... Is it worth the expense to offer shipments? Problems? Advice? How do you start? Advertising.. Thoughts?
It CAN be worth the expense. Typically we strongly recommend that you make sure you have interest and that you have buyers before initiating the expense. We ship several shipments a year across the pond (usually warmbloods, but we also do some stock horses, as well) which, if you are planning on shipping, helps to defer the costs if multiple stallions are going in the same tank. Again, having someone that knows the market over there that is willing to act as an agent is helpful. The market "is" different. You can often work with someone that has an interest in your stallion by trading out some of the services for a breeding, for instance. But make sure they are reputable and will follow through.
Freezing for export isn't cheap and be aware that the stallion will have to have a variety of specific tests done depending on where the semen is being shipped. Additionally, he will have to be placed into isolation at a USDA approved facility.