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NLPA Sheep & Goat Fund
Establishes Loans for Additional Projects


Colorado Springs, CO (Feb. 21, 2002)- The National Livestock Producers Association (NLPA) Sheep & Goat Fund established loans with 11 sheep and/or goat businesses, for a total of more than $5 million in loans to help strengthen the sheep and goat industries. The NLPA Sheep & Goat Fund still has almost $9 million dollars available for loans at a current interest rate of 5 percent.

The NLPA Sheep & Goat Fund approved its first loan in September 2000; the loan was established with a company in Michigan to construct a state-of-the-art lamb finishing facility for the year-round feeding of lambs to service the needs of a major packer's customer demands for premium high-volume cuts and to smooth out kill floor schedules.

Since September 2000, the NLPA Sheep & Goat Fund has written loans for 10 additional projects including:

  • A sheep dairy in upstate New York is using loan funds to purchase milking equipment.

  • A large regional wool-marketing cooperative based in Ohio is using loan funds to enhance its sheep supply and wool marketing activities for its members.

  • Three lamb-breeding operations in Western Nebraska have secured loan funds in order to increase their operations to better supply replacement Polypay ewes for the out-of-season lamb production market.

  • A lamb processing/fabricating operation in Pennsylvania is using loan funds to expand its physical building and add equipment to increase its volume of high quality, branded lamb products sold to high-end restaurants.

  • A slaughter facility for lambs and goats in Pennsylvania is using funds for building and equipment upgrades in order to increase the facility's slaughter capacity.

  • A loan for state-of-the-art wool scouring equipment and facilitation of such will allow a Texas hat company to replace 1940 vintage equipment. This acquisition will allow them to keep the first stage of wool processing, scouring, competitive in this country. Allowing the production of the best quality product at a lower rate for the domestic producer.

  • A goat dairy in north central New Mexico has received funding that will allow the dairy to complete USDA Grade A certification and become a viable cheese-making operation. The dairy will then be able to more successfully meet a high market demand where the local supply has been extremely limited.

  • A loan to a Texas processing and fabrication facility will fund the purchase of equipment needed for fabrication of lamb and goat carcasses and the funding of construction of the building to house the fabrication plant. This addition will enhance the current operation to allow for block and case ready product to be marketed throughout the United States.

"We are pleased with the 11 projects that have been funded so far and the committee has several other loans that are close to completion," Pierce Miller, Chairman of the National Sheep Industry Improvement Center (Sheep Center) and member of the NLPA Sheep & Goat Fund Committee, said. "However, a lot of money is still available for loans, so I hope that members of the Sheep and Goat industries will recognize that the NLPA Sheep & Goat Fund, with a 5 percent interest rate, is an extremely competitive lending option."

In 1999, an agreement was signed between the Sheep Center and NLPA that enables the Sheep Center funds to be used in the sheep and goat industries. The agreement allows NLPA to establish a revolving fund that will be used exclusively for loans to the sheep and goat industries with the following goals:

o To make capital available for enhancing production methods and services.
o To improve marketing efficiency and product quality.
o To promote coordination and cooperation within the industry.
o To create opportunities for adding value to sheep and goat products.

"We would like to emphasize the scope of projects the Sheep and Goat Fund Committee is willing to consider for use of the Fund," Scott Stuart, President and CEO of NLPA, said, "Production loans are outside of the scope of this project, but there is no bias toward sheep or goats, meat, fiber or dairy - the Committee will consider any project that encourages innovation and efficiency in the sheep and goat industries."

According to the terms of the agreement, the Sheep and Goat Fund Committee, which consists of members of NLPA and representatives of the sheep and goat industries, is responsible for the oversight of this process. The Committee regularly reviews applications and is only allowed to consider loans up to $1 million that are submitted by eligible entities (sole proprietors are not eligible as written into the legislation that established the Sheep Center).

For more information or an application please contact the National Livestock Producers Association at (800) 237-7193, ext. 10. More information and the application are also available at www.nlpa.org.

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The National Livestock Producers Association, founded in 1921, is an organization of livestock marketing cooperatives and credit corporations representing more than 240,000 livestock producers nationwide and in Canada.


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