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Re: How have you economized your farm?
In Reply to: How have you economized your farm? posted by Nat on June 13, 2001 at 08:50:16:
I know what you mean - when you start adding up the costs of the goats it comes out a surprising figure.
Basically some of the things that we have done have been along the lines of diversity. There is no sure fire way to predict what the goat market will bring from day to day and there seems to be alot of competition. So in that regard we found it best to raise not only goats but sheep, chickens and ducks as well along with a few other assorted critters. Chances are if someone isn't looking for a goat, they "might" be looking for one of the other animals.
We got into this because of a Kudzu vine problem and in some ways it has turned out profitable but when you start adding up the T-posts, wire and gloves to fence, you think, "hmm..is this really worth it". And you really ask yourself that question when you replace all that with cattle and hog panels in stack of 100 at a time.
While for the most part our feed problem was not a problem, what could we do when the Kudzu was gone. Luckily one of the local hay farmers struck a deal where I give his grandson guitar lessons, he gives me all the hay I need.
I'm very much interested in economizing any way I can and if that includes renting out goats for brush control, so be it. A few sales here and there of goats to others and always an eye out for more goat purchases that we know we can turn right around if need be.
My philosophy is that the more you have for sale, the more your customers will know that you always have a variety. But again, try telling me that when I'm trying to work an unruly herd. It rivals a quick sale and being done with them all (something I never would do in reality).
The other economization idea I've been toying with is planting our own crops such as corn wheat, oats, hay, etc. The less we have to rely upon third party products, the less we pay out. Of course if I could just get a good idea of how to create this same situation where I could make the medicines we need...
I think the bottom line in this business (the ag business) is to become a wheeler-dealer at the weekend farm animal swap meets like they have around here. Granted, one may never become filthy rich but I have witnessed many people make a comfortable living brokering fine, quality animals week to week. It's hard work but one starts to see a return on their investment.
Suprisingly, we have used GoatWorld very little if at all for the purpose of brokering any of our goats. It would certainly be a surprise if we one day did. But I've pretty much come to the conclusion to leave that kind of thing to the other goat sites because GoatWorld was meant for everyone to use in whatever way they felt right (up to a point of course).
But I'd recommend placing goat ads from time to time to get the goats you want to buy or sell out there in the public eye and GoatWorld is one place to do just that. Hopefully this kind of thing will continue to build a network of goat individuals who get to know and trust each other enough to where they can feel at ease about dealing with each other in such business transactions.
Thank you for your comments too about GoatWorld. I very much appreciate you as a participant in the Forum just as I know every one else does.
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