From Farm to Fleece: Alpaca Farming in Kentuckiana

By: Jonathan Wahl
Photo: Courtesy of Alpaca Culture

Original content from WHAS11.

JACKSON COUNTY, In. (WHAS 11) - If you take a morning trip to Ed and Juvonda Jones' alpaca farm like I did, you'll find it quiet and peaceful, until the sounds of work start to cut through the sounds of chirping birds.

“If I’m not here, I’m not working. I’m not working to make any money, so I don’t go anywhere during the week," said Juvonda. She and her husband have been alpaca farmers for 8 years and are the owners of Hoosier Heartland Alpacas.

“I’m out here in the morning for probably an hour and another hour in the evening. Just doing maintenance, cleaning up, feeding, ah, making sure they have plenty of fresh water. We just try to keep it clean so that they stay healthy," said Juvonda.

But the work doesn't end there.

“I process everything from sheering to the finished product. It’s cheaper for me. It is my job. I have to do this.”

That means taking the raw, dirty fleece, washing it several times, letting it dry, and running it through a drum carder. It's a machine that breaks up the fibers and gets them ready for the next step.

“When I press the treadle, it turns the wheel which turns the bobbin, and that’s twisting it into yarn," explained Juvonda as she sat working a spinning wheel. It's a slow, yet rewarding job.

Read the rest of this story at WHAS11.