Why are New Saddles Hard to Buy at the Moment? - Saddles Direct

Why are New Saddles Hard to Buy at the Moment?

How has Covid-19 impacted the Saddle Industry?

Supply chain issues in the equestrian industry are seriously affecting leading brands such as Albion Saddles, Bates saddles, Arena saddles, Kent and Master saddles, John Whitaker saddles, Equipe saddles, Fairfax saddles and many more.

Whilst we are definitely on a good road to recovery from the impact of Covid, the break-in production, loss of staff, reduction in stock is still causing delays. In addition, a high number of the popular new saddle brands are only available with a minimum of 20 weeks lead time.

Why is there a supply chain issue?

Lots of reasons, but the key factors are materials, production backlog and increase in demand (industry reports state that the sales of horses have gone up and spending on saddles increased due to more disposable income, predominantly because people could not go on holidays!).

The global leather industry, including the UK, had already faced slowing demand when the global economy was brought to a crashing halt by the COVID-19 pandemic. The impact was far-reaching and deeply affected the UK industry. Almost overnight, orders fell away as downstream customers stopped buying leather, cut off from their markets. Production along the length of the leather supply chain all but stopped, as tanneries and their customers were primarily closed down by the virus.

Most UK-produced raw materials and leather are exported – nearly 90% of leather production was exported in 2018.

* [Source Leather UK]

We asked one of our Saddle Fitter, Sarah Parry, who also runs her own Side Saddle Business, to give her thoughts;

“A stop in the production of saddles from last year has meant not only is there a backlog of saddles to catch up with but also how makers work has changed. Expanding work opportunities has meant fewer workers are available, and this has impacted productivity. As a result, some manufacturers have had to hold off making strap goods to focus on saddles.

The industry will resume as usual after they have caught up, however as lockdown has affected the making, it has also affected the supply of materials. In addition, a pause on slaughter, tanning and refining metal parts has also had a knock-on effect. 

There has been a higher demand for saddlery goods year on year due to the way people work. Working from home and using apps like Zoom has meant people have more time for their horses. 

The supply and demand of products are challenging now, as are services, and as Saddle Fitters, we have noticed an increase in fittings and checks. Ultimately this is good news for the horse. Giving them a new job now the owner has more time and having us check older saddles to make sure they still fit well or need adjusting or replacing can only be a good thing. 

However, horses are changing hands at an incredible rate. Some I’ve seen with two different owners months apart.”

How can Saddles Direct Help You Find a Saddle?

Saddles Direct offer a variety of solutions to ease supply chain problems. Society of Master Saddlers approved and recognised as the UK’s biggest saddle retailer, we have the largest Trial Saddle Bank available for all budgets, offering unrivalled choice and customer satisfaction. With over 500 saddles, new, used, and ex-demo for Dressage, Showing, Eventing, Show Jumping and Hacking, all riders, including amateurs and professionals, will be able to find a saddle to suit them and their horse.

We have many new and ex-demo saddles available in stock to either trial yourself or be fitted by one of our Saddle Fitters, meaning you can get the new saddle you want without waiting the long lead times dictated by the impact of Covid-19.

We are also sharing this saddle bank with our fellow industry partners allowing access to our entire bank of saddles to other saddle fitters worldwide.

To select your next saddle or accessories, visit our website.

 

 

 

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Classified Adverts
Manage the sale yourself!

With the benefit of our huge audience

The Process
Part Exchange
Great option...

If you can’t buy a saddle before selling your current one

The Process
Outright Purchase
Quick and hassle free!

We buy direct, no need to wait for us to sell your saddle.

The Process
Commission
Highest Financial Return!

You receive payment once your saddle has been sold.

The Process