Dr. Jun Luo, a Chinese dairy goat specialist from Northwest Agricultural & Forestry University (NWAFU) in Yangling, China (Shaanxi province) visited Western Maryland goat farms on May 19th.
Dr. Luo visited the site of the Western Maryland Pasture-Based Meat Goat Performance Test. Management of the goats in the test differs significantly from the manner in which dairy goats are raised in China. In China, dairy goats (on the larger farms) are raised in confinement and fed in fenceline bunks.
Dr. Luo gained insight into U.S. meat goat production when he visited Many Rocks Farm in Keedysville. Many Rocks Farm, operated by Jeanne Dietz-Band, raises mostly Kiko goats. The farm markets branded goat meat products and goat milk soap at various farmer's markets.
Dr. Luo visited one of the few certified goat dairies in Maryland: Caprikorn Farms, Gapland, operated by Alice Orzechowski and Scott Hoyman. Cheese is made from the milk from their 50 does and sold at various farmer's markets. The farm has some of the highest-producing Saanen goats in the U.S.
Dr. Luo spent several years at E (Kika) de la Garza Institute for Goat Research at Langston University. You can visit his web site (Chinese) at http://dairygoatnet.nwsuaf.edu.cn/.
The University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and NWAFU are cooperating on various programs of mutual interest.
Read about dairy goat production in China.