Northumberland firm seeks to reduce risk of positive dope tests at Badminton Horse Trials

Bedmax Shavings.Bedmax Shavings.
Bedmax Shavings.
Bags of Bedmax shavings will be helping to prevent positive dope tests at the Badminton Horse Trials.

Earlier this year, the Belford-based firm became the first equine bedding company to receive BETA NOPS accreditation, similar to the certification already in place for equine feeds and supplements.

Cross contamination by naturally occurring banned substances can occur from plants, but some of the most common causes of failed tests include caffeine found in everyday food and drinks such as coffee, tea (including green tea), chocolate and energy drinks, and hemp or flax from granola and similar energy bars.

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Bedding is often overlooked as a cause of positive tests, but it is regularly and sometimes unintentionally ingested by horses when it becomes mixed in hay, for example.

Bedmax bedding.Bedmax bedding.
Bedmax bedding.

It takes only a tiny quantity to show up in a blood or urine test and affiliating bodies across the board take a no tolerance stance.

Bedmax managing director, Tim Smalley, said: “We are very proud to be the first equine bedding manufacturer to be awarded this accreditation, which covers our entire range of bedding products. This is a very positive step forward for the industry and all those with stabled horses at Badminton, with anti-doping being an extremely prevalent concern.

“For a horse to fail a test for any reason at this level is devastating for all concerned, and we feel we have a responsibility to do everything we can to ensure our bedding is not the source of the problem.”

Badminton Horse Trials take place from May 4-8.