Background of the Herd
The meat goat industry has grown in Kentucky, Indiana, and surrounding states at a phenomenal rate in the last 10 to 15 years. With the growth of the industry the need for producer information and unbiased applied research information has also grown.
The meat goat herd at the Southern Indiana Purdue Agriculture Center (SIPAC) was developed to meet the educational and research needs of this growing industry.
For producers to make a commercial meat goat enterprise profitable, they first have to contain costs. Forage and grazing is usually the most cost effecient method of production. When not on specific research trials, the breeding herd is maintained on a forage based production program.
Does are a cross of Boer and Kiko breeds. The crossbred doe seems hardier while still producing well. Does are kidded in May on pasture, when inclimate weather is less likely and forage nutritive value is high. They graze throughout lactation with forage and mineral supplements as the sole source of nutrition. Kids are weaned at about 90 days of age, usually in early August.
Most of the research projects and extension efforts address making forage based production more efficient.
Mike Neary - Purdue University