Boer Goats –‘Meating’ the Market Profitable - Diverse – Easy to Manage
The Boer goat is abreed of goat that has been specifically bred for meat and is regarded as the world'spremier meat goat. Goat meat is low in saturated fat and cholesterol and is growing in popularity and demand in both the domestic and export markets.
Boer goats offer many opportunities for large and small scale farmers who wish to diversify or seek alternative enterprises. The Boer goat is an ideal grazing companion to cattle and sheep particularly if they are in an environment where they can browse. Goats can significantly assist with pasture management as they have the ability to graze most broadleaf plants that other livestock leave behind. Diversification means more animals per acre and greater economic return.
Why Boer Goats?
Boer goats have appealing traits in terms of production, fertility, maternal qualities and ease of management. Boer goat traits include:
- Hardy and adaptable;
- High fertility;
- Multiple births are more common than singles;
- Heavier than other breeds;
- Higher dressing percentage than other goat
- Reach slaughter weight more quickly than other
Meat products: Domestic and Export markets
Within Australia, the demand for quality Boer-infused goat meat continues to grow. The prime domestic markets are for milk fed kids (3-6 months of age) and Chevon (Boer goat under 12 months of age with a live weight range of 35-40kg). An increasing amount of this product is being sold to the restaurant trade so it is ideally suited to smaller, more closely managed herds. It is recommended to use a quality full blood Boer buck over meat breeding does to increase the Boer infusion. Where there is adequate nutrition, this will in turn, lead to better growth rates, a faster turn off rate and better quality meat.
Goat meat is already eaten by 70% of the population of the world and Australia is the largest exporter of goat meat. The majority of export product is supplied by large scale commercial growers of cross bred goats. However bucks and does, that are “cast for age”, from small farm holdings can also be incorporated into this market.
Live Animals: Domestic and Export
Boer goats, for their traits listed above, are in high demand as breeding animals in the domestic market, particularly for smaller farms. They are tractable, easy to manage and require no shearing. The higher the Boer infusion, the higher the meat yields, especially when quality full blood Boer bucks are used. With the Australian number of Boer-infused breeding does growing, so does the demand for Boer bucks.
The live export of Boer-infused breeding does to South East Asia over the past decade has under pinned the growth of the goat meat industry. Countries such as Malaysia have recognised the protein value of goat meat and many governments are undertaking major breeding programs as part of their plans to ensure future food security for their countries. Boer goats are seen as ideal livestock that can be farmed by local farmers in many countries. Boer-infused does 9-14 months of age are keenly sought for these export markets at premium prices well above meat value.
For many years, Australia has been supplying full blood Boer goats as seed stock to countries around the world via live animal shipments, embryo transfer and semen sales. Most domestic goats around the world are small framed, light weight animals. However, once joined to Boer bucks they can increase their off springs live weight by up to 30%. Australia is now seen as the premier supplier of Boer genetics to the world.
Whilst we recognise that export can be very rewarding, there are many protocols and procedures that need to be followed closely to ensure the shipment runs smoothly. We strongly suggest that you liaise closely with experienced and reputable export agents and freight forwarders to ensure all animal welfare, associated paperwork and protocols have been complied with. Some exporters and other industry groups have been listed under Links on this site.
If you are an international buyer seeking Boer goats, please feel free to place your requirements on our Enquiry form (Contact Page).