Revised April 2015
Growth in U.S. ethnic populations and the desire for healthy diets are driving the demand for goat meat. Goat meat is low in fat and cholesterol, is leaner than poultry and offers a source of conjugated linoleic acid. Raising meat goats is an affordable livestock enterprise. According to NASS (2013), meat goats totaled 2.1 million head in January 2015, up 1.02 percent from 2014.
Usually, the most profitable way to market is by doing on-farm sales because the producer eliminates the sales commission and the risks and costs associated with transportation.
Goat meat is called either cabrito or chevon. Cabrito is from kids harvested within the first week of birth. Chevron is from older kids harvested close to or after weaning. Goat meat has a unique flavor and palatability. It is leaner than many other red meats, and usually, less tender.
Goats require very tight fencing. Net fencing; traditional woven wire with two to three barbed wires above it; eight-strand high-tensile fence with electrified third, fifth, and top wire have all proven effective fencing. Goats need minimum shelter. Natural shade and wind breaks are adequate except in cold windy weather when a draft-free shed can be used.
Internal parasite control is the most important health issue for goats. A preventative health program should be worked out with your veterinarian. For common diseases, what is used for sheet can be used on goats.
· University of Kentucky Goat Budgets
· Penn State Sample Meat Goat Budget
· Ohio State Budget Worksheet
To find commodity prices, look up your nearest sale barn’s prices.
Ethnic Foods Market Profile, Ag Marketing Resource Center.
Sheep and Goats, National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA.
Global Agricultural Trade System, Foreign Agricultural Service, USDA.
Web-based Training and Certification Program for Meat Goat Producers, Langston University, Oklahoma.
World Factbook, Central Intelligence Agency.
Meat Goat Marketing and Price Seasonality