During a Vermont Agritourism Conference I attended in early April (more on that soon!), one of the presenters mentioned Cas-Cad-Nac Alpaca Farm. I was looking for another place to visit and photograph on my way home and as you know I can’t resist adorable livestock. I called the farm and they were so kind to accommodate me for a last minute tour.
Cas-Cad-Nac Farm has been in operation for over 15 years and is run by a life-long Vermonter couple, Ian and Jennifer Lutz. They are a fully diversified farm meaning that they produce several different products. Cas-Cad-Nac is a world-renown alpaca stud farm and has received countless awards for the quality of their breeding stock. In fact, there was a group of 5 alpacas that were headed to a farm Norway in just a few weeks.
They also shear their alpacas each year and sell their fiber through a partnership with a local fiber mill. I was so impressed by how they try to use every bit of the wool. Jenny explained that the lesser quality, courser wool can be run through a separator to collect the finer thread that can still be turned into high quality yard. And the scraps that are left over are used for felted insoles and pet toys.
In the past few years, the Lutz family began experimenting with harvesting Alpaca meat and recently started selling it through a new online store. Alpaca meat is relatively new to the United States, but has been enjoyed in South America for thousands of years.
It was such a treat to visit this beautiful farm and meet these adorable creatures with their own unique personalities. I was so impressed by the quality of care these animals received and also how committed and entrepreneurial Jennifer and Ian are in their efforts to sustainably utilize every part of the animal.