2022/2023 Alpaca Owners Guide

Over time, however, North American alpaca herds will grow to a commercially-viable size. Once the fleece is collected, it needs to be graded and sort ed in a consistent manner. Then, a manufacturing plant must be specifically tooled to accommodate each stage of production. Finally, a strong marketing program is needed to promote the unique qualities of alpaca fleece to the domestic fashion and textile industries, as well as to consumers. One encouraging sign of a bright future for the commercial alpaca industry in North America is the increased use of alpaca by prominent fashion designers. Upscale retail firms regularly feature alpaca finished goods. Additionally, a virtually untapped market for alpaca may exist in home fashions and domestic

fabrics—where the durability of alpaca fiber can be exploited

in a very stable, existing market.

Steps are being taken by many talented and dedicated pro

fessionals within the alpaca community to build the “pipeline”

necessary for getting the annual fiber crop into the hands of

those who need it (namely, designers in the fashion centers of

North America and elsewhere). Combined with regional and

national programs designed to increase public awareness of

alpacas and alpaca end-products, the future looks very bright

for owners, for fiber artists, and various subsidiary industries

throughout North America.

68 | ALPACA OWNERS GUIDE 2022/2023

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