Alpaca production is moving from an animal based industry to a fibre based industry. While alpaca fibre has some similarities to wool, many of its characteristics are unique. At the present time all fibre is bulk classed at considerable cost to growers and processors. The development of standards that can be implemented by producers at a shearing shed level will have a major positive effect on gross margins, and will allow Australian processors to produce top that is more highly specified and superior to Peruvian product with which it competes.
This project was funded from the Australian Alpaca Association and the Rural Industries R&D Corporation. The Australian Alpaca Cooperative Ltd, Elite Fibre Australia, The Gordon Institute of TAFE and CSIRO Division of Textile and Fibre Technology also provided funding.