Many registered kiko sales for 2020 have been cancelled or rescheduled due to concerns over COVID-19. And many breeders who had selected their finest registered goats to carry to these events were faced with the question of what to do with the animals that were heading to these sales to represent not only their farm, but the kiko breed. They are likely selling those goats off the farm now, or holding them for sales in the future when gatherings of more than ten people are once again the norm.
Not only long time breeders but new breeders as well often ask the question "are registered sales a good thing?" or they have heard positives or negatives about the sales and would like some input. For the record, we have bought goats at registered sales and sold goats at registered sales. I have purchased goats directly from the breeder and sold goats directly to breeders. The first goats we purchased were bought direct from the breeder, the last goats also.
My purpose here is not to encourage or discourage you from attending and participating in registered sales, but is to offer information on the topic and consider your options. We can not reach our goals when we don't have a plan, and how and where you choose to buy and sell your goats is a part of every breeder's decision making. If you buy registered breeding stock, chances are you are planning to sell registered stock in the future.
When deciding how this topic should be covered, I sat down with a brainstorm list of concerns and benefits. Deciding my time is limited and yours is too, I have tried to keep this brief! Brief outlines from the perspective of the buyer and of the seller (consignor) with examples given from our past experiences as well as experiences related to us from those who sponsor and coordinate these events and those who have participated are quickly (I hope!) covered. If you have thoughts on this topic, please leave a comment!! These posts are all about sharing ideas and learning.
CONSIDERATIONS FOR CONSIGNORS
Your phone will not ring, nor will your inbox be filled with inquiries if no one knows what you have to offer. Advertising in some form is a must when selling registered stock.
There is strength in numbers. And while we are all competing on sale day to ring the high selling bell, we are all in the business of promoting this great breed. Meeting other breeders and discussing goats or even the best place to get good barbeque helps build friendships. You can quickly learn who's farm management style is close to yours and who you can turn to for advice in the future. Not only do we all have our enjoyment of kikos in common, some breeders have other skills/businesses that can prove helpful also - computer techs, attorneys, veterinarians, feed store managers. We really have been blessed with good friends since beginning our kiko journey and we have met some of them during these registered events.
We all want our goats to perform up to the buyer's expectations. And most of us would like an opportunity to thank people for their purchase and for putting confidence in our animals. We also expect our goats to do well on other people's farms. Whether the new owner is tickled pink with their purchase of your consignment or is having some issues being a first timer raising goats, we all want an opportunity to build stronger relationships with those who have placed their trust in our product. When the auctioneer calls "SOLD", you may not know who is behind that bidder number and if you do find out in the future, personal communication is sometimes lost.
At registered sales events, you can view and select animals from several different farms and from geographic locations you would not otherwise consider for a day trip. You will find some nice goats from farms you do not know. You have an opportunity to bring back some genetic diversity to your farm. If you are just starting out, this can be a quick way to put together a herd. Few farms have enough breeding stock quality animals in a given season to supply all the needs of a new breeder.
Most registered sales provide educational seminars for those interested in learning more about raising goats. Those seminars have ranged from rotational grazing to the life cycle of a barber pole worm. From livestock guard dogs to record keeping. From breed stock selection to artifical insemination and embryo flush and transfers. From the history of kiko goats to filling out registration paperwork. They have been a great help to many new breeders and are usually free to any who are interested.
Reserve prices are a benefit to the consignor. As discussed above, it is an opportunity for the seller to establish the lowest price they are willing to take for the animal. During an auction, you may find yourself bidding against the seller's price alone - sometimes called a "ghost bidder". Some people are fine with this practice as it lets them buy the animal for what they are willing to spend and what the seller is willing to take. Others are not and think this kind of mutually agreed pricing is best left for private treaty transactions off the farm and auctions should all be absolute in nature.