Table of Contents


For information that is common to all goat enterprises, see the “Meat goats” chapter.


1. Overview

  • Mohair is one of the rare noble fibres of the world. It is especially suitable for apparel, knitwear, curtaining, upholstery material, socks, shawls and accessories.
  • The hot, dry summers, cold winters and semi-desert vegetation of the Karoo suits Angora goats. Angora goats are shorn at least twice a year, and the year is divided between a summer and winter marketing season.
  • Eastern Cape farmers produce nearly all of South Africa’s mohair. Since South Africa’s contribution to world mohair production stands at 53%, Port Elizabeth may rightly be called the mohair capital of the world.
  • Why farm with Angora goats? The South African Mohair Growers’ Association (SAMGA) website gives the answer: (1) High profitability (2) Regular income, supports your cash flow (3) There are industry stabilisation support structures for farmers (4) Excellent grazing utilisation & stocking rates (5) mohair is utilised globally.


2. International business environment

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  • South Africa is the world leader in mohair production both in terms of quality of product as well as production output, contributing some 53% of the world’s mohair output.
  • Other mohair producing countries of the world include Lesotho (second highest producer), Argentina, Turkey, Australia and the United State of America. Smaller numbers of Angora goat are also found in Mexico, Iran, Chile, Swaziland, Canada, Spain and the UK.
  • South African mohair is predominately exported to China and Italy. Other countries include the UK, Taiwan and Japan.
  • The mohair market has traditionally been heavily influenced by fashion demand, or the lack thereof. This is one of the reasons for the volatility in demand experienced from time to time.


3. Local business environment

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Historically, the Eastern Cape has been the prime Angora farming area in South Africa and today, Angora farming is mainly practiced within a 300km radius of Port Elizabeth. Consequently, the city forms the nucleus of the South African mohair industry.

South Africa is the world leader in mohair production and exports over 95% of its total production, mostly in processed form. The South African mohair industry is highly dependent on the international market; largely because the domestic market is not large enough to support the industry (i.e. mohair products are not affordable to the majority of the South African population).

Volatility in currency/exchange rate can cause difficulties for the South African Mohair industry.

More than 30 000 people are employed in this sector, which earns foreign exchange of around R1,5 bn (Mohair SA, 2018). A recent video by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) has brought shockwaves to the sector (see "Some articles" at the end of this chapter).

The Eastern Cape town of Jansenville – located in the geographic heart of Mohair country – has the country’s first mohair museum, thanks to funding from the Mohair Trust, with Mohair SA as project co-ordinator. The museum theme is ‘From the veld to the fibre and the future’. The displays follow a logical sequence of the actual processes from shearing to yarn to end product. Added to which there is a display of historic articles, coupled with an educational experience of the Mohair story. Find out more at or call 072 981 0650.