Alpacas have been described as, "the World's Most Luxurious Livestock"
At Green Gable Alpacas we wholeheartedly agree and we like to call this, "the Alpaca Advantage".
- Alpacas were domesticated more than 6000 years ago by the Incan Indians of South America and have been prized for their luxurious fiber ever since
- Alpacas are small livestock and thus easily handled. Adults weigh between 125-200 pounds; little, if any, specialized equipment is required to care for them
- Alpacas are accustomed to harsh climates and thus are ideally suited to North American terrain and climate
- Alpacas eat approximately 1-2% of their body weight in grass/hay per day and prefer to live outside. Access to fresh water and a modest shelter is required
- Annual cost to care for an alpaca is similar to care for the family dog
- Alpacas require little acreage; 5-8 animals can be pastured per acre with little or no summertime supplementation of hay
- Alpaca manure is small, pelleted and virtually odorless; it can be placed directly on your garden and is an excellent organic fertilizer
- Alpacas have a long productive life; they live 20-25 years and their fleece can be harvested annually
- Alpaca is a luxury fiber. Demand for alpaca fiber currently exceeds its supply which means opportunity exists for new market entrants
- Alpaca farming offers lifestyle advantages for those seeking to farm without the rigors of traditional farming operations
- Alpacas are completely environmentally friendy and are a sustainable and renewable resource
And then there is the fiber...
- Alpaca fiber is softer, stronger, and lighter than virtually any other natural fiber
- Alpaca is 5-7 times warmer than sheep’s wool, there is no lanolin and no ‘prickle’
- Alpaca has an antibacterial property to it that resists staining and odors - items made from alpaca do not require as frequent washing as other textiles - it just doesn't hold the odor nor is it easily soiled
- Alpaca is soft as cashmere, however, unlike cashmere, alpaca will not loose its luster even with washing
- Alpacas produce fiber in 22 natural colors - more than any other fiber-bearing animal
- Alpaca fiber can be spun so fine that it can be made into anything from rugs to sweaters to high fashion textiles such as those created by big name designers
And finally, the Not-So-Obvious but Oh-Soooo-Important Alpaca Advantage...
- Alpaca ownership is open to everyone - from 9 to 99 - established farmer to city dweller - those who wish hands on and daily care to those who can only be weekend farmers
- Many individuals, including new entrants to the industry, benefit from this Advantage by learning about the care of their animals before actually taking possession of them - this is called agisting or boarding your animals
- Since alpacas are considered small livestock, ownership - even if the animals are not housed on your property - offers a variety of tax saving opportunities (consult a tax authority for details)
Contact us to learn how to enter the new, exciting and growing industry of alpaca farming.