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Hi-

I hope no one takes offense at my "tenderfoot" question ... but how do you make any money breeding goats??

I've seen TexMasters and they look marvelous ... but I keep seeing goats being sold for really cheap prices. I doubt if they were the TexMasters, but some of the others seem to sell for between $35 and $75 dollars. Kinda cheap seeing all the fencing and feed you apparently need.

I know lots of folks love goat milk and goat cheese ... but ... they don't seem to be sold to a mass market. So I'm puzzled ...

  1. Why are so many people breeding goats
  2. Can you make any money breeding goats
  3. And if so ... HOW?
 

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aka avdpas77
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heh, I will let people with much more knowledge than I answer that question.

But I would like to throw something in. Several of the guys I work with have nice boats, and fishing equipment... if they had to justifiy their expenditures in terms of the family grocery bill...........Well, you see what I mean.

I grew up on a farm, and lived on and worked on a couple of more while I kept my "day" job. It is something I loved...but unless one has mineral rights and discovers oil, or unless you happen on to some breed that is rare and suddenly wanted (at fantastic prices) for breeding stock...it is not usually a way to get rich....at least monetarily.

The personal satisfaction?............"Priceless."
 

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Love My Manchas!
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i absolutly agree! where i live it can cost about 8k to get a lisnece to sell dairy goat products, so im just going to make some soap, cheese, and other things for fun and give them as gifts to friends and such. I absoulutly love my girls, but they are a job in itself that dosent pay XD but i do get alot of satisfatction
 

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How do you make money breeding goats? Carefully.

No really, you have to realize that it isn't a get-rich-quick scheme, it is a way of life.

Dairy goats are your milk and cheese producers (and milk for goats' milk soap) while Boer goats are your meat animals. Both products are in high demand, but you need to find your niche markets for your products.

Both are very attractive to folks who are into healthy food (think health-food aficianados). The meat is very good, while the animals are much more manageable than beef cattle, and folks can butcher their own, which can be a huge savings over paying a butcher to do the cut and wrap (most folks don't feel up to cutting and wrapping a huge beef!)

And goats' milk is ever-increasing in demand for its' wonderful health qualities as well.

Many folks who want to be more self-sufficient love to raise goats as they can provide lots of healthy milk and meat for the family. A buck only needs a handful of does to earn his keep, whereas both Bulls and even Boars (pigs) need quite a harem to justify feeding and penning them - and then they are sooo big and dangerous.

Lots of beef farmers have switched to raising meat goats - and those folks aren't doing it because they can't crunch the numbers. You also need less space than for beef cattle.

It is a process that requires time and commitment. And you need to do it right - poor feed and management is going to result in high numbers of losses, both kids and does, which is going to affect your bottom line.

And have you seen those $35.00 goats? Probably full of CL, worms, etc. If they had any meat quality at all, they could be sold for more at the auction yard...Personally, I wouldn't touch them with a 10 foot pole!

Dairy goats, probably the same thing - and some folks selling off pets.
 

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Get quality stock. Breed to improve, utilizing top genetics. Prove your herd through showing (but watch out for disease), or with dairy goats through LA and DHIR. I prefer LA and DHIR, less chance for disease and proves the dairy goat is actually good at what it's supposed to be. :) Home butcher the meat wethers, butcher old does or culls. Avoid disease. Practice preventing common ailments like enterotoxemia or deficiencies by learning about nutrition and feeding. Be sure you're willing to give up family vacations and always have someone to catch kids with dairy goats. Practice CAE prevention with dairy kids and make them marketable - IE sell them tattooed, disbudded and be able to provide herd test results and production records from the herd etc, pictures of sire, sire's dam, dam's dam etc...

People pay LOTS for proven quality. Having stock that sells regularly for 800-1500 per kid is through marketing, proven genetics, and quality. Why not invest in a few quality does - maybe, 350-500 apiece (or cheaper as doe kids in spring) from excellent breeders, and breed them up through AI to the top bucks? Keep doe kids, and continue to service your does to outside local bucks standing at stud or AI to achieve a variety of excellent genetics, then show, DHIR, etc to prove it.
 

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I'm a novice...Pre-novice at this point, but off the top of my head I'd say, the primary benefit is that you get first pick.:goodjob:
 

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Yep we keep all we can and sell the rest Reptyle :) (Texas icecream joke:)

I agree with Camille, it's way of life.

There are models out there that if you stick to them will work for you, but do you have a market? Most are horrid at selling, they never pay themselves labor, and if you aren't going to pay yourself first who is?

You add sentimentality and the cute factor, the bleeding heart for every kid born, when every kid born in reality is livestock destend to meat unless superior...and it's a non money maker for the farm, even considering family milk or meat used.

If you do go after it as a business, then you are cold, you don't love your goats enough...because goats to most are pets first.

Women who have husbands who foot the bill for their hobbies are our worst PR.

So although I am a feminist, meat goats, specifically kiko and boer are mostly men ventures, and it's really why they do thrive.

Paying show prices for your commercial meat goats is stupid. Paying for TexMaster, or any of the copywrited goats, it's just a crossbred breed that anyone can do in their own backyard. Get yourself some commercial does, does who are living at their farm the exact way your model is (browze and hay or feed lot). Then spend your money on a buck who gives you what you need to sell in his kids...only you know your market. Sure having those wethers to sell into 4H and doelings weaned into start up herds for others is gravy money, but if you don't have the market for the goat product...Milk, cheese and soap and breeding stock sales here....meat and hides for you (some 4H sales, start up trios)...than you are spinning your wheels, because even in the highest end show home in dairy or meat you have culls that someone needs to have eaten.

My goats have given me a really nice second income, but I am also not high maintenence. Now that I have added soap, with the marketing skills I have learned from 22 years of hawking goats, it has become an income for me, biggy is an income I can take into my old age.

A really good question to ask is why has the goat venture failed? Why have you not made any money? It is usually directly related to purchasing stock you can't make money on, not having a good, or any business plan and not doing your homework with health management and feeding. And not finding a market. Vicki
 

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It's really important to have an idea where you're going before you start out. I've seen a lot of dreams crash in the last 20 years. Ostriches & Emus at $20,000 ea. and now there are feral emus in East Texas--people turned 'em loose when they couldn't feed 'em. Alpacas are hot right now, Llamas are being slaughtered in Oregon & the meat going to soup kitchens. Boer goats were $10, 000 & up when they were first being touted. If your livestock will feed you and pay for it's own feed, you're ahead of the game. But you have to know how you're going to do that before you buy animals.

Madfarmer
 
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