Goat Gossip 76

Discussion in 'Meat Market' started by sealawyer, Sep 25, 2009.

  1. sealawyer

    sealawyer New Member

    366
    May 31, 2009
    Dew, Texas
    Have you made the connection?

    You have read the headlines “Goat industry is the fastest growing agricultural industry in the Nation!”, “Goat meat and dairy products becoming more popular in food circles!”, “As Immigrants flock to Freedom in the United States, and meats such as goat meat become more in demand!” If you believe the headlines, then all goat producers should be making money hand over fist! We should have to lock our gates and post armed guards to keep our golden goats protected from thievery!
    What is the reality of our situation in the caprine industry? I am not involved in any dairy operations but I know some folks that are and from what I can gather, the dairy folks are maintaining or slowly gaining markets throughout the country. When I go grocery shopping I see more and more cheeses and such in the deli case. Goat milk is becoming more popular as folks who are lactose intolerant have come to find that goat milk is GOOD! I like it too!
    Goat meat is becoming more popular too, but you have to beat the bushes to find the markets for it. Yes, goat meat has become more popular among the health conscious and haute cuisine folks. Have you priced goat meat with the folks that do internet sales and in high-end groceries? Or any grocery or meat market that vends “chevon”? It’s pretty durned pricey, I’ll tell you! Two of the nicest folks I know, Dan Di Cicco and Lynda Kofford-Di Cicco of Toboton Creek Enterprises in the Seattle, Washington area, raise and process meat goats and sell their wares at the farmers markets in Tacoma and Seattle. They attest to the fact that there are two things that are keeping their raising and vending side of the meat goat business from taking off. Production costs such as inputs, meat processing, and haulage keep them from making a good profit from their operation. By the time the product goes on display at the market, costs have pretty much eaten up any profit and have make their product pricey, to boot! They would love to charge a reasonable price for their product, but feed and medications, butchering, and fuel keep going up!
    The other major factor that influences their business and all of the meat goat industry is the lack of industry protection by our government when it comes to imposing tariffs! That’s right, the folks that have sent millions of tons of Australian and New Zealand goat meat over to the good old U.S.of A. do not pay hardly any tariffs at all on the goat meat that they send over here. That is how they can sell their product so cheaply! Lynda gives an example of a Restaurateur who visits her booth at the Market and always compliments her wares and really says he likes the look of her fresh product. When asked why he doesn’t purchase any his reply is “Why should I pay so much when I can buy imported meat from my supplier for one fourth the cost?” Frozen goat meat from overseas costs $2-3 a pound, Lynda must charge $6-15 a pound depending on the cut of meat to even realize a small profit!
    American producers must scrimp and save wherever they can and suffer poor prices at the sales and the importers have almost no production costs, they mass process and ship the meat they package, and they get to pay only a “token” tariff on the meat they import. That is the result of our countries free trade policies. These policies, plus the stringent regulations on food preparation and shipping, have cost the meat goat industry in the production of a wholesome product at a reasonable price, and in retaining goat ranchers in an industry that is already being nickel and dimed to death.
    I know, I’ve heard the argument that if we slaughtered every goat in the U.S. that we could never meet demand. You can call me crazy (which many of you already have!) but I am of firm belief that if we, as an industry, unite and try to politically level the playing field, that we would find breeders coming back into the goat business and folks would start to retain those breeding nannies that have been rushed across the scales at a record pace. Prices would start to rise for good breeding stock instead of us facing fire sale prices for good goats. Folks would stop hanging the “Going out of the Goat business!” shingle out in front of their ranches.
    If breeders get together and start to make the connection between the obstacles facing our industry and the lack of cohesiveness between ourselves, then we might show progress in making a profit for all producers.
    Thank you for your support in our efforts to assist in the education of our Young Adults. The Freestone County Goat Breeders Association is selling Christmas Wreaths for our scholarship fund raiser. These are beautiful wreaths and we hope that you find them attractive also and help us in helping some hard-working youngsters to realize their dream of a college education. The price is $35 per wreath and can be shipped directly to your friends or loved ones. The order form for the wreaths can be found on our web site at www.freestonecountygoats.org. Mail your order form with payment to: FCGBA, P.O. Box 1553, Fairfield, Texas, 75840. Orders must be received by October 13th. If you have any questions or need assistance in regards to our fund raiser you can give Fred VanderMartin a call at 903-388-8528 or e-mail [email protected] or Gary Tugwell at 903-390-7780 or e-mail [email protected]
    The ETGRA will have its General Membership Meeting and educational program on October 17th. It will be held at SFA Goat Research Center, highway 259 north of Nacogdoches and begin at 10am. Topic of the program is buck selection and care, advanced reproduction and introduction to Artificial Insemination. Speakers include Dr. Erin Brown of SFA, Dr. Nuti of Prairie View A & M and Scott Horner also from Prairie View A & M. ETGRA Open Sale – October 24th, Henderson Expo Center, Henderson, TX. Sale begins at noon. Goat can be viewed at 10:30 am or so. Members of ETGRA, NETGRA, and Freestone Co. Goat Breeders Association are invited to bring their goats. Check-in will be from 1pm-7pm on 10/23/09 and from 7am till 10am on 10/24/09. Please go to sale information to review sales rules. For more information contact Paul Joplin at 936-347-3241. The ETGRA is having a raffle for a portable hayrack. Tickets are $5 each or 6 for $25. The hayrack was made by Greg Ashabranner and consists of three pieces. It can be assembled by one person in about five minutes and holds one square bale of hay. The hayrack is easy to move from pasture to pasture as you rotate your herd. The winning ticket will be drawn at the January, 2010 general membership meeting. Tickets will be sold at all association events. Tickets may also be purchased by mail, please include your name, address, contact phone number. Make checks payable to ETGRA and mail to P O Box 152937; Lufkin, Texas75915, for info go to www.etgra.com. NETGRA's Fall Celebration October 10th - Jackpot Show (Goats, Heifers, and Lambs) Hunt County Fairgrounds - See special events page at www.netgra.com for more info. NETGRA Catalogue Production Sale - NOVEMBER 14th, 2009. Location: Hunt County Fairgrounds, Viewing: 9:00am - 11:00am, Lunch: 11:00am - 12:30am, Sale: 1:00pm. Catalogue will be available on www.boergoats.com at a later date. See special events page at www.netgra.com for the special notice on consignments. Well, that’s all I’ve got for now. If you have any goat gossip then call 903-388-8528 or e-mail [email protected] . Bye, for now.
     
  2. citylights

    citylights Member

    824
    Jul 3, 2009
    Southern California
    Wow, Fred, that's too much t digest this morning -- I haven't had much sleep....will have some coffee and read it again!
     

  3. sealawyer

    sealawyer New Member

    366
    May 31, 2009
    Dew, Texas
    Thanks Denise! Gee, I didn't think anyone even read this drivel that I put on the group, much less respond to it. Night, night!
     
  4. citylights

    citylights Member

    824
    Jul 3, 2009
    Southern California
    Fred, you may notice -- but I think you and I are the more "senior" in this group...

    Okay, I read the rant. Until goat meat becomes main stream enough to have lobbyists all over Capitol Hill such as the cattle or swine industry does, you're sunk. Blunt enough? Are there goat lobbyists? I admit I'm not much in the know on the meat industry, but how do you market your meat animals? There are a few people who can afford and will buy the pricier, organic, fresh meats, but few and far between right now.

    I've seen some sales list of Boer Bucks that have sold up to 30-40K. Why aren't those people our marketing -- gotta go -- back to work....
     
  5. sealawyer

    sealawyer New Member

    366
    May 31, 2009
    Dew, Texas
    Denise, I wouldn't call it a rant, although I have ranted in the Goat Gossip before, I prefer to call this GG a strong statement pointing out an injustice being put upon every goat breeder because not even every milk goat is kept for production, there are some that walk across the scale. What do milk goat breeders do with all of the bucklings? This is something that affects us all. What sort of tariffs are imposed upon dairy imports? These are some tough questions that folks need answers to.
     
  6. CrossCreekTX

    CrossCreekTX New Member

    356
    Aug 10, 2009
    Central East Texas
    As long as I cannot process the animals here on the farm and sell the meat, I cannot hope to break even, much less turn a profit. I have people begging me to sell meat to them. I have people that want me to raise poultry and hogs and sell processed meat. Most cannot afford to buy an entire animal or a pen of chickens. They also feel they should get the meat for grocery store (not Whole Foods) prices. Small producers can't compete with the big guys. The laws have been made so we cannot get a foot in the door.

    I know the original purpose of all the regs was to protect the consumer, but they are not doing a very good job of it. They really don't do much except protect big agri businesses, IMHO.
     
  7. sealawyer

    sealawyer New Member

    366
    May 31, 2009
    Dew, Texas
    The only way for producers to counter this is to make efforts to bring caprine products into the mainstream. Get Suzy and Sam Homemaker involved into seeking out and buying dairy, meat, and hair products. Until we unify and MAKE ourselves heard in Washinton and the State Capitols, then goat related products will stay a "niche" market.