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Aside from the cost of hay and feed, one of the biggest expenses in horse care is usually bedding–the soft, wood shavings that line the inside of stalls to keep horses clean and comfortable.

“With our membership of nearly 6,000 racehorse owners and trainers doing business in Florida, and a horse population of nearly 3,500 supporting Florida horse racing, the Florida Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (FHBPA) saw an immediate need to help keep the cost of bedding down, while putting funds back into our industry,” said FHBPA Board Member Chuck Simon, a prominent trainer who will be spearheading the new shavings program named “Gulfstream Horsemen’s Purchasing Association.”

Working with suppliers, the Gulfstream Horsemen’s Purchasing Association (GHPA) created a proprietary blend of medium to large wood shavings, using top-of-the-line Southern Pine timber.  The product was designed to spread and absorb well.


“Most importantly, our horse owners and trainers will see a substantial cost savings,” Simon noted, citing several similar horsemen-operated programs at racetracks nationwide.

The GPHA shavings are being sold in 10 cubic-foot expanded bags for an introductory price of $4.95 per bag.

While the shavings are currently available only at Thoroughbred centers directly connected with Gulfstream Park, such as Gulfstream Park West (Calder), Palm Meadows and Palm Beach Downs, the GHPA has plans to expand its service and its product offerings.

Meanwhile, the FHBPA will use profits from the GHPA shavings sales to create and expand various horsemen’s programs–part of its longstanding mission of “horsemen helping horsemen.”

The FHBPA is among the largest chapters in the National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association, which advocates for Thoroughbred owners and trainers, and administers various programs to assist their many small businesses and employees.

About Gulfstream Horsemen’s Purchasing Association (GHPA)

What is the GHPA?

The Gulfstream Horseman’s Purchasing Association is a newly formed, for-profit business owned entirely by the FHBPA. Initially the GHPA is going to sell wood shavings to trainers located at Gulfstream Park, Palm Meadows and in a limited fashion to Gulfstream Park West.

Why should I buy from the GHPA?

The GHPA have worked with our supplier to get a nice blend of medium and large shavings, using top of the line timber. The product is clean, spreads and absorbs well and trainers will see substantial savings from our pricing.

In addition to the quality of the product, the secondary benefit for FHBPA members is that any profits that are derived from the GHPA will be used to create and expand various horseman’s programs.

When will the GHPA start operations?

We are currently serving selected clients at Palm Meadows and are currently projecting a mid-September date to start serving Gulfstream Park trainers.

What about payment methods and terms?

The GHPA is owned and run by horsemen but this isn’t a welfare program. Our ability to acquire and deliver to you a quality product to you at a low price is dependent on us getting paid in a reasonable fashion. We understand the difficulties of operating a racing stable, that issues often pop up and cash flow can be tight. As fellow horsemen we are willing to work with you to help get your bill paid but major delinquency and being less than truthful will not be tolerated. Currently we are requiring payment within 24 hours for accounts that order fewer than 100 bags per week, larger accounts will be billed on Fridays with prompt payment expected. Your bill will be emailed to you. Our billing system directly accepts debit/credit cards and ACH bank transfers, if paying by check make arrangements to have it collected by a GHPA representative or dropped off at the FHBPA office.

Will the GHPA be selling products other than wood shavings?

We have the ability to expand into just about any market that horsemen need including feed, hay, straw, pellets, tack, etc. However it will depend on how well trainers support this initial program, basically it’s up to you guys. If you want quality products at better prices from a company whose profits benefit you in other areas, take care of your business and support the GHPA.