Mir Hassan Beiranvand (1), Alireza Chegeni (1), Nader Papi (2), Farhad Mirzaei (2)
1) Agricultural Research Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Animal Science Department, Lorestan Agricultural and Natural Resources Research and Education Center, Khorramabad, Iran.
2) Agricultural Research Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Animal Science Research Institute of Iran, Karaj.
History of goat breeding in the province
Although no written documents indicate when Lori sheep and goat rearing began, it is generally believed that Lorestan province was the earliest region of sheep and goat keeping in Iran. Archaeological evidence from caves and carvings on the stones and ancient handicrafts in Lorestan province, such as Kalmankareh cave, reflects this fact. There is a long history of breeding goats in the area, dating back about 8,000 years.
Geographic distribution areas
The original habitats for Lori goats are the regions of Khorramabad, Poldokhtar, and Elshtar cities. These goats are also reared in other parts of the province.
The population of sheep and goats in Lorestan province is around 4.8 million. The goat population is more than 1.6 million, so about 33.3% of small ruminants in Lorestan province are goats.
Types of rearing systems
Goats are raised principally for their meat, milk, fiber, and skin. Lori goats are reared in mountainous areas and mainly the oak forests of Lorestan province. Lori goat raising can be raised with other livestock such as sheep and cattle on low-quality grazing lands, although goats are a separate herd in some areas. There are three goat breeding systems in Lorestan province:
There are about 135,000 farmers in the Lorestan province. Approximately 100,000 of them are livestock farmers. Many agricultural and livestock farmers earn their daily living from breeding sheep and goats. Approximately 25,000 nomadic households are directly engaged in sheep and goat farming, selling meat, milk, fiber, and skin of their goats and sheep.
Cultural, social and economic relations with nomadic and rural communities
Goat meat is very popular in Lorestan. It is low-fat meat with a favorite taste. There is a great demand for it in the Arabic countries, so goat meat is exported to these countries every year. It is easy to keep dairy goats and raise the bucks for meat since one should breed his does to keep them in milk, and roughly half of all kids are male. However, the Lori Black goat is the primary meat breed in the Lorestan, principally raised for meat, not milk. Lori goat meat consumers, especially villagers and nomads in autumn, prefer goat meat to sheep meat, mostly flesh of Lori Black goats.
There are different ecotypes of Lori goats in the Lorestan province. The naming of most native Lori goats is according to the body color, the color of head-face, belly, and face-ears color. Although, prevailing naming occurs according to ear form plus the ear and body color. For example, a goat with a tubular ear form is called Bayl. Lori goats are similar to goats in some of the provinces of the Zagros area in Iran. Still, the black goat has become the dominant type of Lori goat during long periods of nomadic life, so it has produced the best shelter for them, called the black tent.
Classification or ecotype frequency of Lori goats in the herd is based on body color, including black and white (10.5%), black and brown (39.5%), black-white and brown (9.9%), white and brown (3.9%), brown (5.2%), black (22.7%), black-cream (1.9%), cream (1.3%), white (1.3%) and the other mixed colors are less than 0.6%.
The skin of Lori goats is exported to other countries, such as Turkey. There is also great demand for goat meat to be shipped to Arabic countries yearly.
Items use of products
The meat of Lori goats is available for nomads and villagers, especially during celebrations and religious ceremonies. The nomads and rural communities make yogurt, butter, buttermilk, curd, Qara Qrut, local cheese, and ghee from the goat milk for their families and for sale. In low-income families, the goat’s role is as a small cow for households so that for about six months, its milk is used. Nomads and villagers in the Lorestan province use goat fiber to make ropes, black tents, and containers from the skin for drinking and storage of animal fats.
Areas identified for improvement
The International Goat Association promotes goat research and development for the benefit of humankind, to alleviate poverty, to promote prosperity and to improve the quality of life.