Visit Horse Country: Hallway Feeds Nourishes Racing’s Elite

The Life
Hallway Feeds in Lexington is a global business that has fed 11 Kentucky Derby winners through 2017. (Courtesy of Hallway Feeds)

Hallway Feeds in Lexington, Ky., has a history borne out of the rich Bluegrass soil in the heart of horse country. The company was formed as an offshoot of Farmers Feed Mill, which husband-and-wife business partners Bob and Bonnie Hall bought in 1964.

Bob Hall had already made a reputation in the cattle industry and also won awards from the University of Kentucky as a herdsman. That experience helped Farmers Feed Mill to thrive, and the family operation grew into one of the most successful feed providers to area cattle farms through the years as son Lee and daughter Julia joined the business.

By the 1990s, the Halls were ready to expand into the horse feed market. The Hallway brand was launched with the goal of servicing the multitudes of Thoroughbred farms in central Kentucky. It has expanded into a global business that is currently the only family-owned and operated feed company dedicated to the horse industry.

Touring the facility. (Courtesy of Hallway Feeds)

Hallway’s products are made through hard work, building long-term relationships with suppliers, a commitment to innovation in the areas of equine science and nutrition, and a reputation for integrity.

“Our top priority is making sure we’re still making quality feeds and getting them in front of the people that have been with us, and make sure we serve those relationships and serve them with our technical services as well,” said Hallway Feeds sales and marketing manager Anthony Koch. “And it’s not just about getting horse feed in front of people, it’s making sure we’re making the services what we need them to be, whether it be nutritional analysis, hay samples and analyses, and helping them out with the weighing and body condition scoring and the growth tracking program. That’s really big to make sure we keep up with those farms and maintain a good relationship.”

Their success is reflected in the fact that Hallway has supplied products to at least one winner of every Grade 1 Thoroughbred stakes race currently held in North America. Eleven Kentucky Derby winners have grown into prominence while nourished by Hallway feed, including Real Quiet, Barbaro, California Chrome, and 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah.

Hallway offers a variety of feeds created from high-quality ingredients, each containing a specific nutritional distribution geared for a horse’s individual needs, whether they are young and growing, mature and in their racing prime, or recovering from an injury. The company is also growing their sport horse division, targeting the equestrian sector that serves as a second career for many retired Thoroughbreds.

Courtesy of Hallway Feeds.

Hallway is constantly striving to improve their product, and a recent innovation involves adding a new mineral complex to their feeds for performance and sport horses. The complex offers gastrointestinal benefits and improves bone density. “It’s in all the racing diets, all the sport horse diets as well, and we’re very excited to include it,” Koch said. “It’s definitely a proprietary source, and you’re not going to see this in a lot of other feed companies.”

Hallway Feeds offered tours of its mill prior to the formation of Horse Country, so it was an easy decision to partner with the organization and further raise the profile of central Kentucky’s world-famous horse industry. On its tours, visitors take in the entire complex, from office to mill to distribution area, and watch feed being made from initial ingredients to finished product. “Look, we realize it’s not as sexy as going to a farm and seeing newborn babies, you know, the foals out on the ground right now,” Koch said. “But nobody ever leaves our tours early. We have a good time.”

Visitors learn about how Hallway’s individual horse feed products are made for specific purposes, and about how they improve horse health and safety.

“You know, that’s a big conversation going on right now in the feed industry, and what’s really different is how safe these feeds are for the horses,” Koch said. “And so it’s really good to have those conversations and let people know the lengths that we go to and that the farms go to, to take care of these horses and do everything right by them.”

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