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Silver Lining for Alpaca Ranchers

January 24, 2011

The alpaca industry in the U.S. is poised to soar, thanks to generous government tax breaks.

An extension and expansion last year of the bonus depreciation and Section 179 deduction in the 2009 stimulus bill is allowing alpaca breeders to write off 100 percent of the cost of buying their alpacas this year. Farmers can also deduct expenses such as feed, fertilizer and veterinary care if they raise the alpacas for profit, according to the Associated Press.

Naturally the alpaca-breeding industry is not the only one receiving this tax break, but the normally high cost of buying and breeding the animals, especially compared to regular sheep, is making them a much more attractive purchase for ranchers this year, courtesy of Uncle Sam’s tax breaks.

According to the AP, the government-sponsored largesse could give a considerable boost to the U.S. alpaca industry and support the growth of commercial mills in this country. The alpacas can even be used to reduce an individual’s tax bill, though it’s probably not a strategy you would want to recommend to every client.

Still, if the frigid temperatures continue this winter like they have so far, there’s bound to be a lot more demand for alpaca-lined overcoats.

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