is any breed of goat that produces cashmere wool. Cashmere wool is a goat's fine, soft, downy, winter
undercoat used for commercial use.
"cashmere" comes from Kashmir, the wild and mountainous area of India
and Pakistan; however, the fiber came from Tibet and was woven in Kashmir. In
the 15th Century India, more than 50,000 people were employed in the processing
In the 19th
Century, a Scottish manufacturer, Joseph Dawson, developed the first mechanical
method of separating the fine down fibers in the goat's fleece from the coarser
outer hairs. This breakthrough shifted the cashmere manufacturing to Scotland
and the modern era of fine cashmere knitwear began.
Cashmere production is a new industry for the United
States. The first Cashmere goats were imported from Australia and New Zealand
in the late 1980's. Since then several Cashmere breeders and growers have been
producing breeding stock to launch this new industry in the US. They are
sheared once a year and a full grown adult buck will yield as much as 2.5
pounds of fleece. The fleece consists of two kinds of fiber, cashmere and guard