Are you a goat owner looking to turn your passion into a profitable business? There are many unique ways to make money off of your herd, from selling goat milk and cheese to offering goat yoga classes. Check out these 14 ideas to start making money off of your goats today.
Table of Contents
Selecting a Niche
Whichever income stream you select from below, it is important to consider the niche. Certain breeds of goats are best for their dairy production, others for meat, and everything in between.
Due to the variety of possibilities, we recommend monetizing your herd via sales that compliment each other.
Dairy: Sell milk, cheese, soap, baby goats, and adult does.
Meat: Sell goat meat, stud young bucks, and sell goat skin.
There are a million different combinations you can do, but the most important part is selecting the right goat breed for your niche and lifestyle.
As with any business model, profits equal income minus expenses. The easiest way to increase profits is by reducing your expenses.
So, if you have a lot of acreage for pasture or you rent your goats to graze and weed control a neighbor’s property; either will reduce your feed costs. Our article How Many Goat Per Acre covers this topic in depth.
Another method is by partnering with a local brewery for their leftover (and often times free) grain.
Sell Milk & By Products (Cheese, Ice cream, Yogurt)
While any breed of goat that gives birth will produce milk, dairy goats will produce far more than what their kids need to thrive. Nigerian Dwarf goats for example will produce 1 to 2 quarts/liters of milk a day for up to 10 months.
While goats’ milk has a similar amount of calcium to traditional cow milk, a key difference is that it has more fat and is rich in protein. It is also easier for the human stomach to digest.
This abundance of milk can be pasteurized and sold, or it can be made into by products such as goat cheese, ice cream and even yogurt!).
Popular Dairy Goats
Farmers have noted getting $8 to $12 per gallon of milk sold. For a breed such as Saanen, which could be $36 a day!
While this sounds like easy profits, goats do need to be milked at least every twelve hours (2 times a day). Additionally, milking equipment can be rather expensive, and licenses are typically required to sell milk.
Soap making is becoming increasingly popular, especially for homes that are looking for a more natural solution. Not to mention other benefits such as soothing dry skin and reducing signs of aging and inflammation.
Based on our research it takes about 2 hours to prepare the soap. From that point it cures for 24 hours and continues to cure for another 4 to 6 weeks.
One bar of soap can sell for $5+! That can be a $250 profit when one batch yields 50 bars of soap.
Harvest Goat Fiber
A continuous source of income from goats is cashmere or mohair. Certain breeds are a popular breed for each of these, so it is important to do your research.
Fiber can be easily extracted from (live) goats and can be processed on your farm or through a processing service. These fibers can be made into a variety of products such as yarn sweaters, and much more.
Plus, cashmere can be sold for an astounding $60 a pound! While this seems incredible, it is important to consider that goats typically yield 4 ounces of cashmere annually. Therefore, it requires a lot of goats for this to become profitable.
Goats can be rented out as a sustainable and affordable solution to weed control! This is often called Goatscaping and is becoming increasingly popular.
The income for renting goats to clear property will vary based on your area. Generally speaking it costs between $400 and $1,000 per acre. Generally speaking, 30 goats can clear half an acre (1/2 acre) in 3 to 4 days. An entire acre can be cleared in an average of 7 days.
Sell Your Goats
If you are breeding your own goats, selling baby goats, does, bucks, and wethers can all be a valuable source of income.
Adult goats depend on their purpose, health, desirable traits, and age. By purpose we mean if you are selling females that have not been bred yet, they will sell at a lower cost than does that have already been bred. This is because like many farm animals, the females need to prove they can breed and carry a healthy kid to birth.
An unregistered baby goat can sell for $50, but if you are able to register them, they can sell up to $500. Plus, goats often give birth to multiples (twins, triplets, and even quadruplets!) which multiplies the income.
Adult goats that are registered can range from $500 to over $2,000.
Pregnant dogs are especially profitable as customers will pay a higher price for multiple goats. Not to mention the doe has proven she can breed and will provide her new owner with at least one kid and an abundance of milk.
Breeding and Studding Services
What if you have bucks? Then you can stud them out during breeding season to get another farmers doe pregnant.
While this is a rather easy source of income, unless your goals are registered it is likely not highly profitable. Our research shows $50 to $75 is the average stud fee.
The good news is you can breed your stud with multiple farms and females in the span of a year. Some breeds such as Nigerian dwarf goats don’t have a specific breeding season, and rather are able to be bred all year, depending on when they are in heat.
Sell Goat Meat
Like us, you might be surprised to hear that there is a high demand for goat meat. However, in many cultures and community’s goat is a popular source of protein with lower cholesterol. Not to mention it is leaner than many of its more popular alternatives.
We have even heard of farmers selling to local restaurants for dishes with Chevon!
Popular Meat Goats
Black Bengal goat
Kalahari Red goat
So how much can you sell goat meat for?
There are several factors to consider such as demand in your area, the type of cut, and diet of the goat. As grass fed typically sells at a higher price tag, but buying an entire goat can provide the buyer with a bulk discount.
Grass fed goat meat can sell for $20 a pound! Even a smaller goat that processes 40 pounds of meat could net $800 in income. If you are not butchering your own goats, then the profit would be reduced by the butchering costs.
If you are processing your goats for meat, then harvesting the skin can be a profitable bonus.
We were surprised to see the level of demand for this product. But understanding that it is soft and durable, as well as versatile as it can be turned into leather, we can see the multitude of uses.
The price of the hide will vary, but typically once fully processed they can sell for $20 to $35.
For gardeners, goat manure is gold! It not only improves soil texture, but also allows more air to reach the roots.
This product, which every goat owner has in abundance and can sell for $60 for a carload at a local pick-up. Or online for $11 for an 8-ounce bag!
Rent Goats for Photos
Photos of goats can be sold for others to use online, or even in print such as calendars. With a camera or a smart phone almost, anyone can take photos that will sell!
If you are not particularly artistic, then you can rent out your goats to a photographer that will pay for the subjects. Baby goats are especially desirable!
Herd sharing is a program where a farm will share/split a portion of the products produced by the animals with those that have paid a fee.
This can be an easy way to make some additional cash if your farm produces more than you need.
Opening up your farm to tourists can be a profitable way to make income from your current set-up without additional infrastructure. People from the city are thrilled to hand feed and pet goats and other farm animals.
We have seen this firsthand many times, as friends and family come over. They always have their cameras ready and are so excited to hand feed and pet goats.
If you are not thrilled with the idea of having your property always open to strangers, consider special events such as educational courses, children’s birthday parties, etc.
When zoo’s rent out their petting zoo it is typically between $400 and $500 for a 2-hour party.
One thing to consider with this method would be regarding your liability. We would recommend looking into different business structures to limit your own personal liability. A liability policy may also be helpful, but we recommend you speak to an insurance representative to determine if that is needed in your case.
As an experienced goat owner, you can offer a variety of services to other goat owners. This range of activities is based on your comfort level and experience.
A few examples include:
Caring for goats while the owner is away ($25 to $50 for a 60-minute visit)
Disbudding ($5 to $10 per goat)
Hoof Trimming ($10 to $20 per goat)
For providing these services or doing them on your own farm we recommend our favorite hoof trimmers.
As you learn from raising goats of your own you can grow to share this knowledge with others. This can be in person or virtual classes, eBooks, blog, or other informational sources that you can sell.
There are a variety of ways to make money from your herd of goats. From renting them out for Goatscaping, to selling milk, or other byproducts. The best way to make a profit from your herd is by doing more than one of the suggestions above.
If you are looking for more passive income then selling extra milk, cheese, and other products to friends, family, and coworkers will help cover your cost of raising goats.
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