Research & Development

The Goat Industry Council of Australia, (GICA) regularly assesses areas within the goat industry that could benefit from targeted research and development (R&D) programs. GICA works with Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) and Animal Health Australia (AHA), through the use of industry levies, on R&D projects and programs. The Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) also undertakes research and development on behalf of dairy and fibre goat producers.

Current and previous successful research and development projects and initiatives include:

  • Goatmeat and Livestock Industry Strategic Plan 2020
  • Going into goats: Profitable producers’ best practice guide
  • Producer demonstration sites
  • Goatmeat nutritional analysis
  • Dairy goat manual (2nd Edition)
  • Properties and performance of goat fibres

Goatmeat and Livestock Industry Strategic Plan 2020

The Australian goat industry is set to take on-farm practices, production and exports to the next level with the release of a new five-year research and development plan. Developed by the Goat Industry Council of Australia (GICA), with support from Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA), the Goatmeat and Livestock Industry Strategic Plan 2020 details clear R&D targets for the industry and attributes responsibility to key service providers for achieving those goals. Read the Goatmeat and Livestock Strategic Plan (pdf)

Going into goats: Profitable producers’ best practice guide (the GiG Guide)

The GiG Guide is a best practice guide for goat producers. 

Such a guide was identified by MLA and GICA as the best way to support growth in the goat industry and contribute to securing the productivity, profitability and food safety of the industry. 

MLA drew upon the experience and best practices of more than 40 goat producers from across Australia in the development of the GiG Guide, ensuring its practicality and relevance to common goat farming operations around Australia. 

The GiG Guide explains the key principles for managing a profitable goat enterprise and provides a pathway for goat producers to lift the productivity, profitability and sustainability of their goat enterprise.

Having been written by goat producers for goat producers, the GiG Guide is recommended to all existing goat producers and those considering entering the industry. 

For more information visit the MLA website, or contact MLA on 1800 675 717. The GiG Guide costs $60 for MLA members and $120 for non-members. 

GiG Guide supplement - A practical guide to producing goats in the rangeland

The Australian goatmeat industry has experienced strong growth over the past 20 years with over 1.5 million goats processed annually. This growth has been largely supported by the sale of goats sourced from the rangelands which accounts for more than 90 percent of production.

To support further growth in the rangeland goat industry, MLA released a new online tool, the Going into Goats: A practical guide to producing goats in the rangelands.

This online guide deals with the key issues that contribute to running a successful goat production enterprise in the rangelands as identified by leading producers from around the country. These issues are grouped into five sections within the guide:

  • Business management
  • Infrastructure
  • Animal health and welfare
  • Grazing management
  • Marketing

The guide also includes 20 case studies illustrating the key issues covered within the guide and a range of other useful tools and resources. The guide is available online at www.rangelandgoats.com.au

Producer demonstration sites

MLA has found that producer demonstration sites are an effective means of demonstrating, developing and encouraging adoption of MLA research findings and technologies.

Producer demonstration sites also work to seek research and development solutions to emerging problems identified on farm.

MLA’s producer demonstration sites program funds grants up to $20,000 per annum for up to three years and are available for groups of producers who wish to generate new, or validate existing, research and development knowledge.

These grants are aimed at increasing the sustainability and profitability of red meat production.

Contact MLA for further information. 

Dairy goat manual (2nd Edition)

The Dairy goat manual compiled by RIRDC is a guide to current recommended dairy goat farm management practices based on observations and information gained during the course of the RIRDC project Farming and Marketing Goat and Sheep Milk Products.

Find out more about this publication and other RIRDC projects for the dairy goat industry.

Properties and performance of goat fibres

A knowledge and understanding of the properties of speciality fibres is essential for effective utilisation in processing to garments. Process development is increasingly relying on judicious blending of fibres for yarn manufacture, knitting, weaving and other operations in producing finished fabrics. This RIRDC study provides a concise documentation of the properties and processing of speciality fibres.

Find out more about this publication and other RIRDC projects for the fibre goat industry.