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 Eating Alpaca?
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NewHopeSuriAlpacas

107 Posts

Posted - 11/15/2010 :  12:11:35 PM  Show Profile  Visit NewHopeSuriAlpacas's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I know that in Bolivia, Chile and Peru alpaca is eaten. However, I didn't realize that this is happening here also. Is this a common occurence? Imagine my shock when I stopped a local feed store and met an elderly couple who told me they'd bought an alpaca at a local livestock auction. The animal was matted and neglected. The couple went on to tell me that there are meat processors within close distance that will slaughter and package your alpaca like they would a deer, pig, cow, sheep etc.

Is this where the unwanted animals are heading? Or is it going to happen like horses where their slaughter and sale of their meat has been outlawed?

Blessings to you from Darren, Kelly and the Kids!
New Hope Suri Alpacas
Cortland, OH 44410
216 227-0010
newhopesurialpacs@gmail.com
www.newhopesurialpacas.com
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bobvicki

2938 Posts

Posted - 11/15/2010 :  12:36:49 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Or is it going to happen like horses where their slaughter and sale of their meat has been outlawed?

I seriously doubt that there are enough alpaca owners in this country to raise enough fuss to make that happen.
quote:
The couple went on to tell me that there are meat processors within close distance that will slaughter and package your alpaca like they would a deer, pig, cow, sheep etc.

I would believe that almost any butcher shop that processes deer or cattle can process an alpaca, there are instructions on line too.

Bob

Bob & Vicki Blodgett
Suri Land Alpaca Ranch
3288 Halter Avenue
Newton, Iowa 50208
641-831-3576
alpaca@iowatelecom.net
www.alpacanation.com/suriland.asp
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NewHopeSuriAlpacas

107 Posts

Posted - 11/15/2010 :  2:26:18 PM  Show Profile  Visit NewHopeSuriAlpacas's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I've been told that alpaca tastes like a cross between chicken and turkey. lol.

I don't know if I'll ever be able to get to the point of eating alpaca, but I guess it depends on hunger?

Blessings to you from Darren, Kelly and the Kids!
New Hope Suri Alpacas
Cortland, OH 44410
216 227-0010
newhopesurialpacs@gmail.com
www.newhopesurialpacas.com
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Nancy Rehbock

172 Posts

Posted - 11/15/2010 :  3:32:50 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
People have been eating llamas in this country for some time. Even heard of some being donated to the food bank in Oregon. There was a processor that tried getting a commercial market going for llama meat but they ran into too much opposition. Although it is illegal in this country, people eat horses too- just have to put a big label on the package that says "NOT FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION". Worked with a from Chinatown in NY who told me that there are no stray cats there- so she would rescue one when she saw it because she said they ended up in a pot. I had an uncle who was a butcher. He has passed away now, but he use to say, "Meat is meat!" I guess a lot of meateaters would agree. Nancy
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Shadowberry

164 Posts

Posted - 11/15/2010 :  3:59:04 PM  Show Profile  Visit Shadowberry's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Nancy Rehbock


Worked with a from Chinatown in NY who told me that there are no stray cats there- so she would rescue one when she saw it because she said they ended up in a pot.



There was a Chinese restaurant in a nearby town that was closed temporarily after they were found to be serving cat in their "chicken" dishes.

Nancy

Shadowberry Farm Alpacas
Tom and Nancy Imphong
Carlisle, PA 17015
717-795-8045 - Home
717-440-1440 - Cell
shadowberry@verizon.net
www.shadowberryfarmalpacas.com
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pacapeep

103 Posts

Posted - 11/15/2010 :  5:17:32 PM  Show Profile  Visit pacapeep's Homepage  Reply with Quote
we had a UPS delivery guy that dropped of a box at house and told me that he had eaten alpaca in South America and the meat was very tough. This is something that I couldn't do and probably never do.

Delaney Holland
(Daughter of Matt and Katy Holland, owners of Holland Acres)
Alpacas of Holland Acres
Olivia, MN

Please E-mail my mom, Katy, if any questions
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NewHopeSuriAlpacas

107 Posts

Posted - 11/17/2010 :  12:37:01 PM  Show Profile  Visit NewHopeSuriAlpacas's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I keep thinking about this. I've spoken to horse owners who have gone riding in a park only to come back and find that 2 horses were deposited in their trailer.

That being said, I didn't get into this business to raise food for the table, but I can see that it will happen. In May, when I needed a companion male I had an overwhelming response. Several wonderful alpaca owners wanted to give me multiple animals. So, I can see that alpaca for ingestion may become a very real and viable desire. However, w/ Senate Bill 510 coming up today in the Lame Duck session, me may never be given that option!

If there were a responsible, humane, clean and organic way to produce such food others may seek it. As far as it being tough, well, I suspect that is due to age and diet. I still don't know that I could eat. The alpaca does have a split hoof and does chew the cud...so it would even be Kosher!

Blessings to you from Darren, Kelly and the Kids!
New Hope Suri Alpacas
Cortland, OH 44410
216 227-0010
newhopesurialpacs@gmail.com
www.newhopesurialpacas.com
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southernson

63 Posts

Posted - 11/17/2010 :  1:00:56 PM  Show Profile  Visit southernson's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Alpacas can be sold for meat and will get in the area of $200-$250. I know because of a certain breeder raising an abundance of intermediate alpacas in the WI area, some alpacas had to be sold out for meat. Their fiber and production does not cover the cost of board and their owners have no place to keep them. It's unfortunate, but it continues.

We have never sold an alpaca for meat. There's a simple way for the market to avoid it. Know when a female or male is not producing offspring that have a viable future in the market.

Jeremy Dyson
Southern Son Alpacas
http://www.alpacanation.com/farmsandbreeders/03_viewfarm.asp?name=22916
www.southernsonalpacas.com
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mfount

218 Posts

Posted - 01/04/2011 :  3:45:23 PM  Show Profile  Visit mfount's Homepage  Reply with Quote
It is kind of sickening to think of our wonderful animals being eaten. Besides, I doubt if they have much meat on them and would probably not be good to eat. I know of someone who said that about a llama and I would think that would be more true with alpacas.

Mike and Jan Fountain
Fountain Mist Alpcas LLC
Marshfield, WI 54449
(715)676-3903
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nyala

3317 Posts

Posted - 01/06/2011 :  11:37:12 AM  Show Profile  Visit nyala's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi,

This topic always creates controversy. I think it's good that folks are talking about here in a respectful way. My husband Andy has eaten alpaca in Peru multiple times (and I'm sure lots of other alpaca folks that have traveled in Peru have tried it) . They are commonly eaten there as are llamas. Food is one of the reasons they raise camelids in South America. Andy was not wowed by the taste. Here they were marketed as the huggable investment and I don't think it will be easy to develop a meat or hide industry for camelids after that. It would not have been easy anyway.

I have very mixed emotions about the idea. We are seeing so many alpacas and llamas particularly boys land in rescue unshorn and in horrible shape. While you do see sheep and goats in rescue too of course, lambs and kids that are not going to end up as breeding stock can and are commonly sent to market for meat. This reduces the number in horrible situations. A farm we know who raises cattle and sheep for meat and also raises alpacas did humanely slaughter a couple alpacas this past year and served it at their harvest festival. A thing the owner said in a recent publication that impressed me and got me thinking was: "I'm responsible for a humane outcome," she says. "My animals deserve a good life and a good death." I think this point is critically important. When we send them out into the world particularly the pets what kind of situation may they end up in?

It worries me what happens to everyone's non-breeding males. We have to make the fiber pay or we are going to see more coming into rescue in horrible shape. I understand why farms are exploring humane slaughter for meat and hide. Almost every sheep breeder I know raises market lambs and that is where they make money on meat not wool. Its not a big jump for them to think about alpaca meat.

I don't like the meat thing, but I hate the boys dying from m-worm because they don't get shots or dying from heat stress because they have 3 or 4 years of fleece on them. I think the solution is all of us work even harder to develop the fiber end of things.



Ann



D. Andrew Merriwether, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Anthropology and Biology, Binghamton University
and
Ann and Andy Merriwether
Nyala Farm Alpacas,Vestal, NY
www.alpacanation.com/nyalafarm.asp
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KLQ

42 Posts

Posted - 01/06/2011 :  1:29:13 PM  Show Profile  Visit KLQ's Homepage  Reply with Quote
It's happening in Canada.

http://alpacafarmbc.com/about_alpacas/alpaca_meat.php


Kathy Quinn
Sublime Alpacas
Clifton Heights, PA
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jillmcm

3204 Posts

Posted - 01/06/2011 :  2:09:03 PM  Show Profile  Visit jillmcm's Homepage  Reply with Quote
And Australia

www.laviande.com.au/

And here, too

http://www.exoticmeatmarket.com/alpacameat.html

There's a farm selling it in Wisconsin, although I can no longer find them online. Snowmass talks a lot about alpaca meat on their website, too, and they eat what they raise.

http://www.snowmassalpacas.com/alpaca-info/alpaca-meat.html

Jill McElderry-Maxwell
Bag End Suri Alpacas of Maine - ¡BESAME!
Benton, ME
(207) 453-0109
bagendsuris@roadrunner.com
http://www.bagendsuris.com
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Circle M Alpacas

257 Posts

Posted - 01/07/2011 :  12:16:09 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ann is so right in that this is a good topic to discuss. We do have a responsibility to be good stewards to our animals and sometime that involves hard uncomfortable choices.
We have given away a tidy portion of males and even a female to farms that raise goats or sheep.
I have talked to a number of farms that do process males on a limited basis.
Senate bill 510 does not impact livestock processed On Your Farm By You for personal consumption. You can not sell any of the meat but you and your family can eat it.
An average size adult male will yield about as much meat as a deer which is about 30-50 lbs depending on your processes.
Like venison, the meat does not have any fat so you have to add beef fat for paca burger.
Like other meats, depending on the processing and preparation the meat can be tough but if prepared properly is very palatable.
The tenderloin is probably the best meat you would ever eat and the alpaca burger and jerky is better than beef.
If alpaca was marketed as a consumable it would probably sell at a better price if marketed as an exotic meat akin to buffalo or alligator.
I think you have to be practical and realistic about everything in life. I adore my alpacas and would much rather sell them for their fiber than as a feast.
-Candi


Candi M Mitchell
Circle M Alpacas
540-384-7599
Catawba, VA 24070
circlemalpacas@aol.com
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Heidi Christensen

4211 Posts

Posted - 01/08/2011 :  10:25:34 PM  Show Profile  Visit Heidi Christensen's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Jeremy,

Your comment about not selling any animals for meat made me think about the dog breeders I have know in the past who swore they would never sell a puppy to a pet store, but later found their animals in the pedigree of puppies sold in a pet store. You just never know what is going to happen to an animal after you sell it. I look at some of my older girls and wonder how many owners they have had in the past (the boys too, but I don't have any elderly boys). Do the people who bred them ever think about what happened to them?

So what do we do about the folks we sell to who later lose their homes or jobs or just no longer want to have alpacas? I would hope if one of my animals ever ended up in a rescue type situation that the owner would contact me, but what if its one who was given to a friend by the person I sold it to etc? This is the thing that convinced me I didn't want to be a dog breeder anymore. One, I tend to think the best of everyone so wouldn't know a shady person if they hit me in the face, and two, I wouldn't want one of my animals to suffer because the owner didn't want to contact about a problem.

Heidi Christensen
WingNut Farm
Graham, Wa
(253) 846-2168
http://alpacanation.com/wingnutfarm.asp
http://wingnut-alpacas.com
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Paradise

922 Posts

Posted - 01/09/2011 :  12:20:33 AM  Show Profile  Visit Paradise's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I put a clause in my fiber/pet boy contract that if the new owners find themselves unable to care for the animals I would like first right of refusal. Though it is likely unenforceable, it at least lets the new owners know how important the welfare of the animals is to me.

Laura Hillman
Paradise Alpacas
Hempstead, TX
979-826-9559
www.alpacanation.com/paradisealpacasoftx.asp
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ard

1790 Posts

Posted - 01/09/2011 :  12:48:33 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Laura,
That's a good idea. I think we will start doing that also.

Robin Alpert
Alpacas 'R Diamonds
15163 W 323rd
Paola, KS 66071
913-849-3738
www.alpacanation.com/alpacasrdiamonds.asp
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Christiane

2762 Posts

Posted - 01/09/2011 :  11:33:08 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have had that stipulation in my dog contracts for years, and also use it in my alpaca contracts.

Christiane Rudolf
Tanglewood Farm
19741 Victory Lane
Fayetteville, Ohio 45118
(513) 875-3739
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Heidi Christensen

4211 Posts

Posted - 01/11/2011 :  09:50:28 AM  Show Profile  Visit Heidi Christensen's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Great idea. Its been a very long time, but the last litter one of my dogs had went out to their new homes with a contract. It was long before computers so don't remember if it had a "bring back any time" I got a call a couple months later from the Humane Society saying they had one of my puppies there, and had contacted me because my contract was so "good". Apparently the guy I sold her to had gone back to Australia and left her and his roommate took her to the HS. Luckily he took all the paperwork with him so they were able to contact me and I ended up keeping her for the rest of her life. But it made me seriously doubt my ability to judge a good home for my animals, so stopped breeding after that. I still doubt my abilities to judge a good home from a bad one, but at least with alpacas it a bit easier to tell as far as setup etc. Plus home visits help!

Heidi Christensen
WingNut Farm
Graham, Wa
(253) 846-2168
http://alpacanation.com/wingnutfarm.asp
http://wingnut-alpacas.com
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southernson

63 Posts

Posted - 01/15/2011 :  03:12:14 AM  Show Profile  Visit southernson's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Heidi Christensen

Jeremy,

Your comment about not selling any animals for meat made me think about the dog breeders I have know in the past who swore they would never sell a puppy to a pet store, but later found their animals in the pedigree of puppies sold in a pet store. You just never know what is going to happen to an animal after you sell it. I look at some of my older girls and wonder how many owners they have had in the past (the boys too, but I don't have any elderly boys). Do the people who bred them ever think about what happened to them?

So what do we do about the folks we sell to who later lose their homes or jobs or just no longer want to have alpacas?



Hi Heidi,
First, I agree with the clauses that the others point out. If it matters to you, it should be in there. Second, I haven't been at this long, but I maintain, and expect to, ongoing relationships with anyone that has purchased from us. If they are losing their home, I will probably be questioning the integrity behind what I sold them, and how as customers of mine, they could have done so badly under my mentorship.

There will always be fiber boys, however we as breeders need to start thinking about at some point continuing to breed these females that will have 50% males, of which 100% will be, or should be, non-breeders, and the other 50% will be females that will also likely grow up to produce more non-breeders. If the female can't improve your herd, they won't make a male that can, so don't breed them. Unless you are prepared to care for or "deal with" the results. Fact is, demand grew the market too fast, and breeders are only now starting to come to terms with the fact that you just can't breed everything. I know some farms that have left their low end females open for the past two to three years, and you know... they aren't overcrowded, they aren't feeding 120 alpacas they can't sell, and they aren't trying to sell a dozen fiber males a year anymore. The ones they are breeding are doing very well in the shows and selling easily. If we don't want to eat them, breeding in moderation is the only other option.

Jeremy Dyson
Southern Son Alpacas
http://www.alpacanation.com/farmsandbreeders/03_viewfarm.asp?name=22916
www.southernsonalpacas.com
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bobvicki

2938 Posts

Posted - 01/15/2011 :  11:43:09 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
If they are losing their home, I will probably be questioning the integrity behind what I sold them, and how as customers of mine, they could have done so badly under my mentorship.


Jeremy,
Sometimes it has nothing at all to do with your mentorship or even the people themselves.

Newton, Iowa where we currently live was featured on 60 minutes a while ago lost MayTag which was bought out by Whirlpool, after losing many jobs through cut backs or decreases in business. Whirlpool then closes the plant here. This effects several thousands of employees. Then the economy tanks, several other small companies cut back or go out of business. Iowatelecom sells out to Windstream, Windstream cuts back 40-50 positions that they can serve through the Windstream employees, then they decide to move back into the old Iowatelecom building and reduce employees by about 150 people including the current town Mayor.

Last year when Chrysler forced many dealerships to close the one here was one of the ones allowed to stay open, then 6 months later they closed. Tractor supply which opened about 4 years ago just closed in November.

The town is working hard to attract new businesses but for every one that get a commitment that will mean 30 new jobs another business closes and 40 jobs are lost.

The local hospital was losing money, went through a period of many CEO's over 3 years and a temporary management group that was really bad, the resulting reduction in the labor force over 200 positions lost.

The local Board of education decided to close one of the 5 elementary schools last year. The high school has lost so many students it has dropped a level in the statewide school athletic division.

There are many good people who had no choice but to pull up and move, and reduce their living expenses.

I am sure there are many similar stories all over the country because of the last few years economy.

Other things can be be a major illness or sudden death that totally devastates a family.

Some times we just have a lot less influence on things than we can imagine.

Bob

Bob & Vicki Blodgett
Suri Land Alpaca Ranch
3288 Halter Avenue
Newton, Iowa 50208
641-831-3576
alpaca@iowatelecom.net
www.alpacanation.com/suriland.asp
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Heidi Christensen

4211 Posts

Posted - 01/15/2011 :  11:54:23 AM  Show Profile  Visit Heidi Christensen's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Jeremy,

Your last paragraph is totally true, although I see the lower quality female a bit differently. I want them to see what my males can do. Its "easy" to breed a good male to a good female, but if you breed a good male to a mediocre female and get a good cria, even better. All fiber is usable, the higher (25 or so) is best for socks, which are the most popular item for many who sell alpaca products.

Additionally, even the best animals will produce animals that don't live up to "breeder" quality or even ones a breeder wants to keep in their program. Perhaps you are acquainted with Wayne Jarvis. Wayne sent me a copy of his breeding goals in 2006 - according to this cocument, he intends to have 100 females by the year 2011, so I would think he has around that number (he had 23 in 2006). Wayne is keeping 2 - yes 2 - of his male crop every year as future replacement sires. I really doubt he is going to eat the 48 males that don't make the cut.

So, in my mind, cultivating markets for end product is a heck of alot better than working on alpaca recipes and how we can sell carcasses and hides.

Heidi Christensen
WingNut Farm
Graham, Wa
(253) 846-2168
http://alpacanation.com/wingnutfarm.asp
http://wingnut-alpacas.com
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