ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) – Supply and demand are out of whack when it comes to goat meat, according to Curtis Haaland, of rural Aberdeen.“Production is not anywhere near what demand is,” said Haaland, who, along with his wife Carmen Haaland, is trying to help satisfy the growing demand by raising the animals.
One reason is that Hispanic, Somali and other cultural groups, particularly Muslim populations, are growing in the United States – and they favor goat meat.
Professional trade journals say goat meat is the most consumed meat in the world, accounting for almost three-fourths of all the red meat that’s eaten.
The journals say that since 2002, the number of people in the U.S. who eat goat meat has soared 42 percent and that in two years, U.S. goat-meat consumers could hit 22.9 million.
U.S. consumption this year is expected to be 72.7 million pounds. Just four years ago, it was 50.9 million pounds.
Not only do the Haalands raise goats, but they also eat goat meat, which Carmen Haaland described as a lean meat with no marbling or fat. The flavor is nondescript, she said.
“It tastes like whatever you fix it with,” she said.
Her husband said research has shown that goat meat is ideal for diabetics.
The National Agricultural Statistics Service says South Dakota has 5,750 meat goats out of 2.4 million in the nation.
The highest price for goat meat in South Dakota is around 90-95 cents a pound.