POLLOK, TX (KTRE) - Mike Whiteman has been in the goat business for many years.
"We started out with a little Spanish goat, and we got two or three more, and then we got three or four more. People would say I got a goat and I don't like it and we would buy it." Whiteman said.
That number of goats Whiteman and his wife own has grown exponentially over the years, and now they focus on raising a unique breed that's primarily white.
Savanna goats are sometimes mistaken for dairy goats, but this particular breed isn't very common in East Texas.
"They come from South Africa just like the boars, they started developing them in 1955 and they first came to the United States in about 1992." Whiteman said.
Whiteman says these goats are perfect due to their disposition.
"They're a very calm goat, easy to handle, and easy to work. They have a somewhat inherited resistance to worms and other parasites. So from that standpoint they work really good here in East Texas because worms are the number one problem with goats."Whiteman said.
According to a recent six year study conducted by Texas A&M AgriLife, results showed that there is currently an increase in demand for goats in ethnic populations but a decreasing supply.
The study also said that most goats are sold when prices are at their lowest during the summer months of July to September.
"The goat market in the United States has been strong for a number of years. The last few years it's been extremely strong, prices have been up a lot like cattle prices. Goats at the major goat markets are bringing in a very good price." Whiteman said.
The future of the goat industry is still quite fruitful.
"We look at it as a viable commodity for a number of years." Whiteman said.