02/09/2012 6:16PM

Racing industry groups launch Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance

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A group of industry organizations has launched a non-profit company that will serve as an accrediting body for so-called “aftercare organizations” that provide homes for horses that have been retired from racing, the organizations announced Thursday.

Called the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance, the company was funded by seed money from Breeders’ Cup Ltd., the Jockey Club, and Keeneland. The TAA will “accredit aftercare facilities based on a code of standards covering operations, education, horse management, facility services, and adoption policies,” a release from the organizations said. The TAA also will raise funds on behalf of the operations it accredits, according to the release.

Post-retirement treatment of Thoroughbred horses has become a hot-button issue in recent years. Many racetracks currently have a relationship with one or more post-retirement facilities, in part because of accreditation requirements of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association’s Safety and Integrity Alliance, which was launched three years ago.

The TAA will be based in Lexington, the organization said. It has yet to hire a staff.