Upper Lachlan has largest alpaca hub

Crookwell Gazette
By: Susan Reynolds
Photo: By Susan Reynolds

Photo Caption: Maggie-Mai learning all things Alpaca from her mother on her first outing into the paddock. This little girl was premature and had to be fed every 2-3 hours by her owner for the first 3 days of her life.

The Upper Lachlan Shire is now considered the “hub” of alpaca farming in NSW with an estimated 6000 alpacas across the region and growing. 

Sitting atop of the Great Dividing Range at 1,000 metres, the Upper Lachlan provides near perfect fibre growing conditions with cold winters and dry summers attracting discerning Alpaca breeders.

The largest alpaca farm in the Southern Hemisphere, Millpaca, has made Binda its main maternity, grazing and conditioning facility due to the good soil, clean water and varietal pastures available throughout the year. 

Millpaca breed for quality fibre and meat.

Forestview Alpaca Stud at Laggan has had great success over the years, winning many broad ribbons at the Crookwell AP&H Show.

These awards were for their fine stylish fibre and more recently, at the highly competitive and prestigious Charles Ledger Show in 2016.

Greenridge Glen Alpaca at Crookwell has built a business around Alpaca tourism and developing products embracing the natural range of colours of alpaca to locally knit scarves, pet wear and knitting yarn spun at Adagio Mill in Orange.

The alpaca industry is considered mature with an estimated two hundred thousand animals across Australia.

It has a strong future with worldwide demand for alpaca fibre and quality Australian bred animals. 

The industry has capacity to provide consistent fine and super fine fibre, meat to restaurants and skins for fashion accessories, household mats and boots. 

Alpaca is a clean animal ideal for Australian conditions with soft pads that create minimal impact on topsoil. 

They are selective grazers and use communal dung piles that break down to enrich the soil. 

Alpaca belong to the camelid family and do not foul water.

 ~ The Crookwell AP&H Show has an Open Alpaca Fleece section with winning fleeces displayed in the historic Dome building during the show event over the weekend of February 4-5th.

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