Date of this Version
Angora goats and the mohair they produce are not major agricultural products in the United States and certainly not in Minnesota where there are fewer than 3,000 Angora goats. Flocks are small and often are owned by those interested in hand weaving. Nevertheless, mohair finds a ready market. In 1989, raw mohair prices in Texas were: kid hair (it's much finer), $6.50/lb; yearling hair, $2.00/lb; and adult hair, $1.00/lb. In addition, mohair incentive payments have amounted to $30 to $15 per head the past two years. These high hair prices are stimulating interest in goat production among an increasing number of Midwest livestock producers.
The United States (primarily Texas) produces about 10.0 million lb; South Africa, 15.0 million lb; and Turkey (original home) 16.0 million lb of mohair, clean basis. The United Kingdom takes 62 percent, France 9 percent, and Italy 9 percent of U.S. exports. Japan, Russia, and Western European countries are also big importers of mohair. Australia has recently imported some superior Angora breeding stock from Texas in an effort to improve the hair quality of its goats and stimulate production.
Angora goat production data applicable for the Midwest are scarce, and research from the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station (TAES) deals more with adult goats maintained under extensive grazing conditions. Data are lacking as to their husbandry requirements, reproductive potentials when kept under intensive conditions, and housing requirements. At one time, it was believed that Angora goats could not withstand cold weather. However, over 10,000 goats are kept in Upper Michigan, and Minnesota producers manage them much like sheep.