John & Susan Merrell
41390 Hwy 226
Scio, OR 97374
503-551-7219 (cell)
Alpaca Farming
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MazFiberAlpaca is a unique natural fiber. It is a very fine, long stable fiber with excellent thermal properties, an exquisite hand and a wonderful drape. Alpaca comes in the widest range of colors of any natural fiber. It is relatively rare and often in high demand in the global textile industry, contributing to its value. In the United States the alpaca fiber industry is served by fiber artists, small scale custom processors, and a national fiber cooperative that utilizes commercial textile mills.

Traditionally produced only in South America, alpaca fiber is now being produced in North America, Australia and Europe where herds of gentle alpacas have been established over the past 25 years.

The natural colors of alpaca range from white to black, with shades of beige, fawns, browns, greys, and even maroons and peaches lying between. These colors can be blended to achieve an even broader palette of hues.

An Australian study concluded that alpaca is perceived as soft as Merino wool that is a full 10 microns finer. This is a reflection of the unique construction of individual alpaca fibers.

Alpaca has found use in a wide range of apparel and textiles, from heirloom quality sweaters and scarves, to expensive suits, to unique home wares.

It is as coveted by hand spinners and fiber artisans as it is by European high fashion design houses.

Alpaca is perfectly adapted to the "green" movement. It is sustainable, natural, and renewable.

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"Manufactures from their hair more resemble silk than woolen stuffs, and some of those made of the Alpaca fleece, are quite black, without having been dyed. It has been a matter of surprise to many, that they are not naturalized in this country, as the climate would not be an obstacle to success. The demand, however, for their produce so much, increases, that it is very probable they may at some future time become denizens of our mountainous districts..."

R. Lee
Anecdotes of the Habits and Instinct of Animals (1852)
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