Mid-Atlantic Sheep - Goat Marketing Project
While demand for sheep and goat meat in the Eastern U.S. exceeds current production levels, many producers do not know how to take advantage of the opportunities that the ethnic/religious marekts present. The Mid-Atlantic Sheep & Goat Marketing Project (MASGMP) will build upon the accomplishments of the Northeast Sheep & Goat Marketing Program (NESGMP) to improve the marketing infrastructure for sheep and goat producers in the twelve northeastern states and expand the impact of the program further south. The MASGMP will re-design and expand the we site created by the NESGMP to emcompass all states in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Of the 400 sheep and goat producers participating in the workshops or obtaining information from the web site and other educational materials, 20% will change their breeding, feeding, and/or marketing programs to target the religious/ethnic markets; 10% will pool their sheep and/or goats for transport to a regional livestock auction; 5% will increase their net market share by marekting their sheep and/or goats through a local livestock auction or special graded sale; 10% will direct marekt their sheep and/or goats to consumers, slaughterhouses, live markets, restuarants, and/meat markets; and of all the producers which allow on-farm slaughter, 90% will implement humane practices on their farm and dispose of offal in an environmentally safe manner (e.g. composting).
- The web site is currently being redesigned, expanded, and automated using web database software. Progress has been severely stalled by server problems, software changes, security gliches, and personnel issues (webmaster was unable to work on web site for most of 2007).
The web site includes a producer directory, for sale and wanted ads (called market inquiries), Easter listings, a calendar of events, a marketing directory (with slaughterhouses, live markets, sale barns, etc.), news, links, and educational materials. Despite the difficulties encountered with the web site, it is fully functional and successfully links buyers and seller.
Each year, the ethnic holiday calendar is updated. It is widely distributed and used.
Humane slaughter posters are distributed to interested producers. In 2007, 7 posters were requested.
Information on humane slaughter was provided to a new custom and on-farm ethnic slaughter house.
Sheep and goat marketing presentations were given at the Mid-Atlantic Direct Marketing Conference (Maryland) and the National Livestock Graders Conference (West Virginia).
Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes
- There are 956 entries in the producer directory (compared to 763 in 2006) from 44 states.
There are 61 producer associations listed.
There were 21 Easter listings in 2007.
There was 75 market inquiries in 2007.
There are 287 records in the marketing directory.
The calendar of events was utilized throughout the year by many states.
The project (web site) cannot be properly evaluated until the computer issues are solved, the web site changes are made, and the web site is used for awhile.