(Jamie) Welcome back! Let’s catch up with Duane and the goat judge at the Kansas State Fair.
(Duane) Duane Toews joining you with AGam in Kansas. While at the Kansas State Fair an opportunity to catch up with some of the Grand Drive judges. That being the youth program for the 4-H and FFA members who are showing their livestock here at the Kansas State Fair. We had a chance to catch up with Chad Colburn from Silver City, Texas, and Chad tell us a little bit about your background and the goat industry and how you came to be one of the judges here this year. (Chad) I work for Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service as a county extension agent. And so as a result of my job, I do a lot of youth programming with livestock projects. And so I’ve been fortunate to judge a lot of major livestock shows throughout the country and multiple species. But I’ve also judged a considerable amount of market goat shows all across the country including all the Texas majors. I’ve been in Kansas three times now. I judged the State Fair last year and also the Kansas Junior Livestock show. So, been fortunate to judge a lot of goat shows across the country. (Duane) From my perspective it appears that you referenced different market weights. It appears different ethnicities have a preference for goats for different sizes that works well for producers as well. (Chad) Absolutely. And one of the things with meat goats is in terms of carcass weights and harvestability, it’s an individual…the individual animal is going to dictate when he needs to be harvested in regard to back fat and just shelf life. And so, we have goats that mature out at 60 pounds. And then we have goats that will go ahead and mature out at close to 100 pounds. And so there’s different weights that require different times. As far as ethnicities are concerned we have a lot of goats that go into the Hispanic market. A lot of Hispanic populations will consume goat. They call that cabrito. In addition to that a lot of Islamic groups or Muslim type groups will also consume goats that are intact. So they use those for the halal market. And that’s their religious ceremony where they use sheep and goats that are totally intact. (Duane) We think about the Boer Gilt breed, a part of the goat industry. How big of change did that make for us in the U.S.? (Chad) It made THE change, if you want to call it THE change. Before the Boer goat came over, the Spanish goat was the predominant commercial breed in the U.S. and there’s still a lot of merit to those goats. They’re really good, a prolific in terms of they have multiple pregnancies and they can handle a lot of various range conditions to where they can handle desert type situations probably as good or better than the Boer goat. The other goat that we have before the Boer goat came over was the Angora goat, and those are known as Hair goats. The production of mohair was very important with Angoras. Now, the wool and mohair incentive was taken away back in 1995. And so with that we’ve seen a dramatic reduction in Angora goat numbers. But to answer your question, the Boer goat has changed the commercial goat industry in the U.S. 100 percent. They’re definitely heavier muscled. They can…they’re also prolific in terms of reproduction and they can also survive in various range conditions. They have a lot of merit just in regards, they grow fast, they’re muscular and are easily raised. And so there is a big, big merit to having Boer goats in your commercial flock for sure. (Duane) Our thanks to Chad Colburn, Silver City, Texas, evaluating the goats at the Grand Drive at the Kansas State Fair in Hutchinson, Kansas. For AGam in Kansas I’m Duane Toews.
(Jamie) Let’s find Duane one more time on the Grand Drive at the State Fair. Stay with us and meet the sheep judge.