does anyone here raise goats for meat

Discussion in 'Goats' started by mtnmom208, Apr 25, 2005.

  1. mtnmom208

    mtnmom208 Well-Known Member

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    I'm new to this forum and I haven't seen anybody talking about meat goats. We have five acres and have been tossing the idea around. We do not want to profit from goat meat, just feed our family. If you have experience with this, please give me some basics. We know a bit about goats but mostly home-dairying. We saw an article on the news about it too, it seems that meat goat farms are on the rise and goat meat is becoming more mainstream. Any info will do..................
     
  2. Freeholder

    Freeholder Well-Known Member

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    I haven't specifically raised goats for meat, but we have eaten surplus animals. I think if you have some experience with dairy goats, you shouldn't have any trouble managing a few meat goats. You'll want to make sure of the basics: fencing, feed, pasture management, water supply, salt/minerals, vaccinations, hoof trimming, shelter, and keeping control of the times your does are bred, so you don't have kids born in the coldest part of the year. Goats are easy to butcher at home, as they are small enough to manage even for one person. And the meat is good. Think about saving and tanning the skins -- they could be quite useful.

    Kathleen
     

  3. bethlaf

    bethlaf Homegrown Family

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    we keep two herds , a meat and a dairy herd
    because so much of it overlaps , knowledge wise its the same, practice wise its much different,
    feed wise as well
    meat goats are fed different grain from dairy
    and they are treated, pretty much like completely seperate herds
    wiht our dairy herd, we only have does,with the meat herd its mixed,our breeding does are left with kids till they choose to seperate, dairy does some get to dam raise , others have only bottlebabies ......
    as long as you have goat basics , i dotn see it making much difference, i think , personally those who dont consider meat goats as part of the profit on the famr are making a BIG batch of mistake !!!
    for example, i take 2 bucklings to market, ones a boer , and the other a registered alpine buckling
    ill make, maybe 25.00 off the alpine, and the boer will sell for 50-60

    i kid you not , even same size and age
    its a money maker every time
     
  4. burfer

    burfer Well-Known Member

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    Glad you asked this question, not too much is about meat goats. I am new, but I have noticed there are a few differences. Feed wise, my boers would be fat little hogs if I fed them as much grain as some dairy goats! I have found that the boers are easier to contain in a fence, I have no problems with them getting out. They are also very easy to deal with, mine are calm and easy to handle. I know there are exceptions to any breed, these are just my experiences. Worming seems to be a bit different also. I just love my meat goats, although all the kids are so friendly it makes it hard to take them to the sale!! :)
     
  5. animal_kingdom

    animal_kingdom Well-Known Member

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    Raising Meat Goats for Profit by Gail Bowman is a book I use.
    I have mostly meat goats and a milker just for breeding purposes and then for milk for ourselves.

    Follow the book and you can't go wrong. It's invaluable! I think Amazon has it for $16

    Funny how the prices range from one state to another....here meat goats are about $60-$125 and milk goats are a firm $150. That's an off the farm price. I live near the New Holland livestock auction and most of what goes there people just eat because we have learned that what goes into the auction house is for meat because it's the last place to put an animal. (I know there was discussion on here about that, it's just what we do- take it there last if you don't want it and it's no use to you)
     
  6. HunterTed

    HunterTed Rockin B Farm

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    My uncle and I both raise meat goats. I have no experience with dairy goats. Only problem that we have is that we can never keep one long enough to butcher it for ourselves. I have people stop by weekly wanting a goat to butcher. In fact two weeks ago we decided that between the 2 of us we had 10 bucklings tht were ready for butcher and one that would be ready next month. As of today there is only 1 left, and I have decided to keep him as a billy to upgrade my herd (he came out of my uncles herd). Hard to turn down 50-60 bucks for a three or four month old billy. When I do happen to have one slip through the cracks and no one buys him we butcher them just like I do the deer that I kill every fall. There is a book called basic butchering of livestock that I heard was pretty good. Never needed it. I have been butchering my own sheep, goats, calves, deer, and other livestock since I was a small child.
     
  7. bethlaf

    bethlaf Homegrown Family

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    ted, same problem here, we are more often searching around and trying to find lower priced meat goats so we can fatten and sell them

    its hard to keep enough stock in stock

    we livei n an area where most of the hispanic population lives in small apartments and rental houses in town ,but they still wan traditional foods, as evidenced by the fact that our towns population is 1200 and we have 2 mexican food stores, plus what the grocery carries, which is a pretty good stock, and 2 mexican restaraunts
    i know of 2 other farmers , meat goats and chickens that have the same issue , i met them at the auction house too

    so , what does it mean , well it means i ssell about 1-2 goats a month right now, when in reality i could be selling 5-6
    we are gearing up with buying breeding stock but i honestly dont see us as being able to meet demand until , perhaps next fall

    goat meat is a huge market, and growing
     
  8. HunterTed

    HunterTed Rockin B Farm

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    Yes the goat meat market is getting bigger and bigger every day. That is basically why my uncle and I have sort of combined our goat sales. Whenever one of us has some to sell we let the other one know which ones and how much. We have found out the hard way that if you can provide a goat or sheep for people whenever they need one then they will come back every time they need another one. So even if I do not have one at the time I take them right over to my uncles and sell them one of his. We have some customers that drive a long way to buy our goats and sheep. I know that they must pass numerous people that have goats for sale, but they know that when they come by I will have something for them wether the money goes in my pocket at that particular time or not. It also helps that we have a place that they can butcher them if they wish.
     
  9. Dee

    Dee Well-Known Member

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    I unfortunately feed my goats too well to make a profit yet. Have to get out of that habit. I also have touble finding a market which shouldn't be since I live on the east coast.