"Hot branding will stay for at least five more years," according to Dr. Werner Schade, Breeding Manager for the German Hanoverian Verband. This news comes after legal battles with politicians, government regulators, animal rights activists, veterinarians and media in the European Union. German warmblood societies will continue to brand foals as the debate over hot branding vs. microchips continues.
Concerns over microchips include painful insertion, infections, loss from the neck of foals and lack of scanners (i.e. ability to read chips in many locations) have been expressed by breeders. Technological improvement and reduction in chip size over the next five years may make this a more viable option for breeders. Hot branding has been abolished in the Netherlands, Denmark and Scotland.