Financial Aspects of Alpaca Ownership
Chapter 6: Hands-On Alpaca Ownership
There are essentially two ways to own alpacas. The first approach
is to simply purchase the animals and begin raising them. The second
approach is to purchase the animals and place them in the care of
an established breeder. This arrangement for care and boarding of
an animal on behalf of another is known as agistment. Under this
method you, as owner, typically would still make the important decisions
about care, breeding, sales, etc.
This discussion will focus on the owner-raised scenario. Many breeders
will work with you to develop an analysis designed for your particular
situation; however, you are encouraged to independently develop
your own financial analysis utilizing professional support if necessary.
Expenditure of funds warrants a full assessment of risks. The buyer
needs to establish a comfort level that this is the right balance
for their lifestyle.
Analyzing the feasibility of alpaca ownership requires making a
set of assumptions. Determining the costs associated with raising
the animals and how much they might sell for in the future are the
basic elements used in projecting a return on the investment. The
assumptions found here are estimates based on many breeders' experiences.
The hands-on method of raising alpacas, as either a part- or full-time
business, requires that the alpaca breeder own a small ranch or
acreage. The property would need to be properly fenced and have
a small barn or shelter. Many new owners already have outbuildings
suitable for alpacas. The alpaca owner is presumed to supply the
Many new buyers start with a breeding pair or two females (and
purchase stud services). The financial returns are similar at different
ownership levels, so don't feel that you have to be a large ranch
The above text is
an excerpt from the AOBA Breeder's Guide Article: Financial Aspects
of Alpaca Ownership.
2. Who Buys Alpacas?
3. Supply & Demand
4. Alpaca Values
5. Capital Requirements
6. Hands-On Ownership
7. Financial Observations
8. Tax Consequences
10. Creating a Herd
11. Purchase Contracts