Elk (Cervus canadensis) are typically grown for their antler velvet, the soft new growth on antlers. The velvet is harvested in early summer and then frozen, dried and sold. In the United States, elk are also know as wapiti (whop eh tee), a Native American word for elk.
Commercial elk production has been taking place in North America since the late 1800s. The North American Elk Breeders Association's conservative estimate is that over 100,000 captive elk are currently farmed or ranched in the United States. Elk production actually spans the globe, with the heaviest concentrations in New Zealand, China, Russia, United States, Canada and Germany.
According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture (2009), there are 1,917 elk farms in the United States. Texas has the most farms with 354, and Wisconsin and Minnesota are the second and third respectively. The farms sold about 13 thousand of the 68 thousand raised in 2007. June 2012 ... Elk
- 2006 Minnesota Elk Inventory, National Ag Statistical Service (NASS), USDA, 2007.
- Cervena - The name given to premium farmed venison from New Zealand that has been naturally produced and processed in accredited plants.
- Chronic Wasting Disease, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.
- Chronic Wasting Disease and Cervidae Regulations in North America, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, 2007.
- Deer and Elk, OMAFRA, Ontario, Canada, 2007.
- DeerFarmer.com - Deer and elk farmers’ information network.
- Deer Research Reports, Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation, Australia.
- The Economic Impact of Pennsylvania’s Deer Farms, Pennsylvania Deer Farmers Association, 2007.
- Elk Factsheets, Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiative, 2006.
- Elk Marketing Council Corporation - This Rogers, Minnesota-based corporation received a producer grant to expand its Elk Snack Stick business.
- Elk Production, Agricultural Alternatives, Penn State Cooperative Extension, 2007 - Marketing, facilities, breeding, nutrition, health and budget information for elk production.
- Elk Velvet Antler, Meadow Creek Elk Farm - Outlines historical uses and scientific research on uses of velvet.
- Food Safety of Farm-Raised Game, FSIS, USDA, 2006 - Venison, antelope, boar and other exotic species are now farm raised in the United States. These animals are under voluntary USDA inspection.
- Marketing the Elk Industry in Difficult Times, Deerfarmer.com archive library, 2003.
- National Animal Health Surveillance System Outlook - Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) surveillance, 2005.
- North American Elk Breeders Association - Information to help promote and enhance the North American elk industry.
- Qeva - Canadian resources and related information on elk velvet antler.
- Raising Deer and Elk, Cornell University Cooperative Extension, 2005.
- A Risk-based Audit of the Captive/Privately Owned Cervid Industry in Michigan, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, 2005 - This report identifies the need for improvements in the cervid industry to minimize the risks of introduction and propagation of CWD.
- USDA Takes Steps to Battle CWD, American Veterinary Medical Association, 2005.
Links checked February 2013.
Elk, Miscellaneous Livestock and Animal Specialties - Inventory and Number Sold: 2007 and 2002, 2007 Census of Agriculture - State Data, National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA, 2009.