Aussie An­gora on the world’s stage

Albany Advertiser - - BUSINESS - Gareth Thomas

An An­gora goat breeder in Red­mond is do­ing her best to pro­mote the mo­hair in­dus­try in the re­gion, say­ing it of­fers pro­duc­ers great value, with high qual­ity fi­bre be­ing bought up by Euro­pean fash­ion houses for up to $60 a kilo­gram.

Jane Or­chard has been breed­ing An­gora goats for weav­ing-qual­ity mo­hair for 35 years.

She owns and op­er­ates Mar­belup Brook An­gora goat stud with about 200 goats run over 87.8ha.

Ms Or­chard has been in­stru­men­tal in help­ing other pro­duc­ers in the re­gion es­tab­lish small mo­hair op­er­a­tions by pro­vid­ing good-qual­ity An­go­ras and ad­vice on get­ting the best re­sults.

As a leader in the pro­duc­tion of high-qual­ity mo­hair in WA, Ms Or­chard said she would like to see the emerg­ing Aus­tralian mo­hair in­dus­try es­tab­lish it­self as a key ex­port re­source.

“With in­creas­ing in­ter­na­tional recog­ni­tion of mo­hair as the most lux­u­ri­ous and lus­trous nat­u­ral fi­bre in the world, sup­ply and de­mand and good prices pro­vide a very se­cure and prof­itable en­ter­prise,” she said.

Ms Or­chard said her years of breed­ing An­go­ras had pri­mar­ily been for high-qual­ity mo­hair, but bred on large-framed an­i­mals suitable for broad acreage graz­ing enterprises.

Aus­tralian Small Scale Mo­hair Pro­duc­tion pres­i­dent Lynne Carter said a vast num­ber of mo­hair pro­duc­ers were older peo­ple and the peak body was work­ing to en­cour­age younger peo­ple into the in­dus­try.

Ms Carter said rear­ing Ang- oras for mo­hair pro­duc­tion was a phys­i­cal job, with the goats re­quir­ing shear­ing twice a year, so it was her fo­cus to en­cour­age high­erqual­ity pro­duce through im­proved ge­net­ics and to im­prove the mar­ket­ing of mo­hair to pro­vide higher prices for farm­ers through ex­port chan­nels to in­cen­tivise new farm­ers to get in­volved in the in­dus­try.

Pic­tures: Lau­rie Ben­son

Mar­bellup An­gora Stud owner Jane Or­chard with some of her sought-after An­gora mo­hair goats.

Mar­bellup An­gora Stud An­gora mo­hair fleece.

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