Alpaca Farming in South Africa

© Marinda Louw
Alpacas are mainly bred for their fine and soft fleece which are available in 22 natural colours, but predominantly white.

Alpaca farming in South Africa started in the 21st century, when in 2000, from the high-altitude regions in the Andes Mountains of Chile, the first 60 alpacas made their way to the country. These camelids formed the first foundational herd. Subsequent imports from Chile, Peru, and Australia allowed the alpaca industry in South Africa to expand to an estimated 10 000 animals in 2019, not all of them registered. 

Alpacas are now a registered breed in South Africa with breeders and owners supported by the South African Alpaca Breeders Society - an organisation that was initiated in 2001. Alpacas in South Africa are farmed for their fleece, as breeding stock, they are also sold as pets, and for their highly effective guarding of sheep flocks.

These few articles give a general overview of alpaca farming in South Africa as well as some information on the processing and use of alpaca fleece.

By Marinda Louw

Alpaca Fleece

Alpaca fleece has been used for millennia for their durable soft and insulating fibre....more

Alpaca Production

Alpaca farming in South Africa is a young industry. Alpaca production started in the early 2000s when 60 animals were imported from Chile...more

How to Farm with Alpacas

In South Africa, alpacas are farmed in more temperate climates and kept on pastures where their diets may be supplemented and adapted to ensure optimal fleece quality and production....more