Goat milk in demand

GOAT owners have been asked to take up the call and help satisfy the growing demand of Tasmanian milk from processors.

Tasmania’s Westhaven supplies national supermarkets with goats’ yoghurt, milk and cheese alongside their traditional dairy products. Yet an increase in demand has led to them needing to appeal to Tasmanian goat herders for more milk. “We’re currently using 6000 litres a week and we’re set to add another 6000 litres to production in January,” said Westhaven’s Sean Hay.

Westhaven has traditionally used Tasmanian goats milk for their product. However, the past few years have seen the previously used herds sold off or returned to the mainland. Milk is currently being shipped in from Victoria. “It’s crazy that we bring milk all the way across the strait to make a product before we send it all the way back,” Mr Hay said.

“We also had to remove the providence from our product that it was ‘hand crafted from Tasmanian goats’ milk’. Westhaven site manager Guaraci Matteo said they don’t need thousand-strong herds of goats to meet their demand. Multiple smaller dairies could help fill the gap. “If there are four or five farmers that have a few hundred goats it could make a big impact,” said Mr Matteo.

Mr Matteo said their preference was to bring in more experienced dairy farmers to their operation rather than wading into the milking operation themselves. “There are herds from the mainland we could look to bring in but we’re not into milking and animal husbandry.

“We aren’t the dedicated dairy farmers; we manufacture the product. “This is more than an opportunity, it’s actual business available for someone to come along and take it up.”