Alpacas are of South American origin, and belong to the camel family. They are bred for their soft fleece. The Alpaca breeders are not focusing on the fleece market now, as the Alpaca fleece markets are not very established, but the Alpaca breeding business is booming. A female Alpaca can cost between $12,500 to $40,000, while for purchasing a male, you might have to shell out at least $7,500, while the cost of superior breeds of males can go above $100,000. Going by the numbers, you can easily infer that, raising an Alpaca can be quite rewarding.
Raising Alpacas for Profit
Raising Alpacas is not an easy job, and in order to reap the benefits you have to be patient. If your sole aim is to earn a quick buck, then I recommend you to not to venture into this business.
Tips for Raising Alpacas
Once you have decided that you are going to raise Alpacas, it is important to take into consideration the following points:
- Visit several Alpaca farms and get the insight of the breeders, this will help you to gain knowledge about the breeding practices.
- You can breed around 6-10 Alpacas in an acre of land. Do not congest your farm with Alpacas, and see that appropriate fencing is done.
- Alpacas in your farm will excrete at a common place, so cleaning the dung becomes comparatively easy.
- They can be fed grass or hay, in addition to this, you can feed them a supplement which would fulfill the vitamin and mineral requirement.
- Timely vaccination and health checkups of your Alpacas is essential.
Building a Profitable Alpaca Business
Every person who enters the Alpaca farming business has an ultimate goal to earn large profits by raising Alpacas. As I mentioned earlier, the returns in raising these animals is not immediate. You have to take the right steps to make your business profitable.
- The first thing that you should do is, find out markets where you can sell your Alpacas. In addition to this, make a list of all the prominent Alpaca buyers, and notify them when you have a good Alpaca to sell.
- Attend Alpacas Owners and Breeders Association (AOBA) conferences, this will help you gain knowledge about the new market trends, and will also educate you about the better breeding practices.
- Such conferences provide a great platform, for you identify your prospective clients, attending Alpaca related events will also enhance your business network.
- The key to building a profitable Alpaca business, is good advertising and marketing. So do not shy away from promoting your business at every platform available.
- You can even make your own website and advertise in newspapers and magazines, to target your clients.
- You should always remember that the marketing strategies will fetch you your clients, but the quality of your Alpacas will decide the fate of your future business with your client.
- Personally I would suggest you to choose the breed of the Alpaca for your farm depending on the type of Alpaca business that you are interested in.
- Breed Alpacas of different colors, this will prove beneficial, when the demand for a particular color of Alpaca fiber, rises in the market.
- You can gain additional profits by renting the male Alpacas in your farm for breeding purposes, a male from a superior breed can be rented for a substantial sum.
- Insure your Alpacas, this will minimize your losses in case of any unfortunate accidents, leading to the death of your Alpaca.
- Tax deductions are possible, if you take appropriate measures. These deductions will contribute to your profit.
In addition to the fleece, their dung can be used and sold as manure, this can contribute to your income. You should hire a specialist to shear the Alpacas and recruit laborers if you are unable to manage the farm on your own. Alpaca farming is a fast growing field, buy the best Alpaca at the outset of your business, to maximize profits in the future.