A study exploring the management of overweight horses has been recognised with a prestigious award. Nadine Mostert won the 2023 BETA (British Equestrian Trade Association) Equine Thesis of the Year Award with her dissertation: Oat straw in the Haylage Diet: Exploring the effect on equine weight, bowel movements and chewing and consumption. The Writtle University College equine performance and business management graduate undertook feeding trials on a group of horses in an attempt to expand knowledge and change attitudes around the inclusion of straw in equine diets.

“It is a remarkable recognition of my dedication, hard work, and passion for equine nutrition research,” she said. “My thesis represents not only a personal achievement, but also a significant contribution to both the academic and wider equestrian community as we try to make breakthroughs in combatting equine obesity without neglecting psychological welfare. This award inspires me to continue pushing the boundaries of knowledge, in particular the practical application of that knowledge, and I am excited to see how the research will continue to evolve in the future”.

The judges praised all four 2023 BETA Thesis of the Year finalists for their practically applied topics of “real relevance to the equine industry”.

“The judging panel would like to congratulate each of the finalists on the successful completion of their dissertation. During the competition their presentations allowed them to elaborate on their written work, bringing their research to life,” said Georgina Crossman who headed the judging panel.  “The selection of the winner was a unanimous decision by the judging panel. Her dissertation was highly relevant to horse owners and the wider industry. Nadine also translated her work in a very accessible way for the lay audience in her infographic.”

This is the eighth year BETA has run the competition which recognises the best in undergraduate study across the UK and Ireland. An audience from the public, industry and academia watched the finalists’ presentations online.

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