What’s Going On? — Info from the Board
Huacaya Breed Standard
A draft Huacaya Breed Standard is nearing completion and will soon be presented to AOA’s membership for comment. Comments received on the Huacaya Breed Standard will be considered by the AOA board for a final draft, which will be submitted to the AOA membership for a vote to approve. The measure will be on this year’s ballot when we elect new or returning members to the AOA board of directors.
Alternative Products Committee
The purpose of AOA’s Alternative Products Committee is to evaluate the feasibility, profitability, limitations, legal concerns, production costs and future markets for AOA members who wish to pursue non-textile uses of fleece, hides, pelts, manure, animal food products and other alpaca by-products. This committee has been reformed with the following members: Lisa Bickford, Mary Beth DeBrodie, Wayne Dorband, Nancy Edwards, Joy Hays, Ian Lutz, and Eric Stoneberg. Vern Butler is board liaison to this committee.
Ad Hoc Membership Committee
An ad hoc Membership Committee has been formed to evaluate current AOA membership levels and the services provided at each level. The committee also is researching potential additional membership types and services that may be needed. Members of the committee are James Beck, Ruth Goss, Michelle Kutzler, and Bonnie Potter.
New EPD Research
Acting upon a suggestion by Lynn Edens of Little Creek Farm, your board has approved a research project utilizing data from the AOA EPD program to estimate density in alpacas. Data from Little Creek Farm and other herds will be used in the study that will be conducted by Dr. Mark Enns, who runs our EPD program, along with his graduate students at Colorado State University.
Show rules for 2017 now includes Walking Fleece as a full-fledged competition open to any AOA Certified Show. Walking Fleece is an opportunity for exhibitors to enter a fleece competition where the fleece is evaluated while still on the alpaca. Conformation is not assessed. Judges use a scorecard and placements are made on the highest point basis. Oral comments are given by the judges during the hands-on evaluation.
This year’s Show System Handbook also includes tips for getting fleeces ready for show – from preparation pre- and during shearing, skirting, and actually submitting the fleece for judging.
You can review all the show rules for 2017 at www.alpacainfo.com/show/handbook. Hard copies of the Show System Handbook, which is a great reference for new exhibitors, can be purchased through the website.
The AOA National Show sponsored by Red Granite Ranch will be held March 17–19 in Denver. As previously announced, the show will not include an alpaca auction this year while more time is being taken to revamp, rebrand and rebuild this component into a high-quality event befitting our national show. As part of the Gala Dinner evening at the Embassy Suites host hotel a live auction will feature high-value items and herdsire breedings.
Looking ahead, a committee will be formed to develop a different model for future staging of our AOA National Auction, and to make recommendations on the organization of our other auction events to best generate support for the association’s programs. We are seeking volunteers for this committee. AlpacaGram 4.05 explains how to volunteer or contact AOA Director Joe Crocco, who will be the board liaison.
Finally, look to meet our new Executive Director Bud Synhorst at one of these AOA certified shows: TxOLAN, Carolina Alpaca Celebration, The Futurity, MAPACA Jubilee and CABA. Of course, Bud will be at the AOA National Show.
Shining Star Award
AOA’s Shining Star Award is presented annually to a person or a group of people (including an affiliate organization) to recognize the spirit of volunteerism that exists in our industry and upon which much of our success depends. Nominations are open for members to suggest candidates for the award based on their dedicated work in support of AOA and the industry. A deserving recipient will be selected from those nominated, and the award will be presented during the AOA National Show in Denver.
Have a great 2017 everyone!
Your AOA Board