GUELPH So, you want to milk goats or downsize from cows? Here are some things to consider.
How do you get in?
Theres no quota to buy but before OMAFRA will issue a mandatory licence, a producer needs to have an agreement with a processing plant or one of the two brokers: Hewitts Dairy in Hagersville, now owned by Gay Lea Foods Co-operative Ltd., or the Ontario Dairy Goat Co-operative Inc. in Teeswater.
Do you have to sell to a processor?
No. Farmers can also sell directly from the farm gate or farmers market with a licence to pasteurize their own milk.
Is the goat milk market really growing?
Kendra Keels, industry development manager at producer group Ontario Goat, said she has heard estimates that growth will triple over the next five years.
How many dairy goat farms are in Ontario?
How much does a producer earn?
At Hewitts, just over 91 cents per litre (on average over three pricing tiers in the last 12 months), but a price increase is in the works.
Can you be a dairy goat farmer full time?
Its tough. Farms milking between 200 and 300 goats typically need at least one off-farm salary. A 500-litre minimum is required for pickups.
Where do you start?
Volunteer on a goat farm to see if goats are the right fit for you.