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Many goat producers have succeeded in targeting various ethnic markets by planning their production and breeding schedules around specific religious holidays. The traditions of these holidays vary widely between different religious belief systems and can affect the preferred size, weight, sex, and harvesting method of the animals usually consumed.

The holiday calendar below is a great resource for producers to plan the breeding and sale of specific animal groups for slaughter at auction or directly to the consumer. Dependent on the number of days within each religious year, the actual timing of these holidays may shift from year to year.

​Holiday

Religion

2024

2025

2026

2027

Chinese New Year

Feb 10

Jan 29

Feb 17

Feb 6

Eid ul-Adha - Festival of the Sacrifice

Muslim

June 16 - 17

June 6 - 7

May 27 - 30

May 16 - 19

Muharramm/Hajra - Islamic New Year

Muslim

July 7 - 8

June 26 - 27

June 16

June 5

Mawlid al-Nabi - Prophet's Birthday

Muslim

Sept 15 - 16

Sept 4 - 5

Aug 25

Aug 14

Ramadan - Month of Fasting

Muslim

Mar 10 - April 8

Feb 28 - Mar 29

Feb 17 - Mar 18

Feb 7 - Mar 8

Eid ul-Fitr - Festival of Fast Breaking

Muslim

April 9 - 10

Mar 30 - 31

March 19 - 20

March 9 - 10

Pesch (Passover)

Jewish

April 22 - 30

April 12 - 20

April 1 - 9

April 21 - 29

Rosh Hashanah

Jewish

Oct 2 - 4

Sept 22 - 24

Sep 11 - 13

Oct 1 - 3

Chanukkah

Jewish

Dec 25 - Jan 2

Dec 14 - 22

Dec 4 - 12

Dec 24 - Jan1

Western (Roman) Easter

Christian

April 17

April 4

April 5

March 28

Easter Orthodox (Greek) Easter

Christian

May 5

April 20

April 12

May 2

Christmas (Western)

Christian

Dec 25

Dec 25

Dec 25

Dec 25

Epiphany, Feast of the Nativity

Christian

Jan 6

Jan 6

Jan 6

Jan 6


Here’s a guide to the preferred size, weight, sexes, and animals preferred at each holiday (courtesy of Ohio State University and Cornell University):

Christian Holidays:

Western/Roman Easter:

  • Preferred: Milk-fed goat kids weighing 20-40 lbs

  • Acceptable: Milk-fed goat kids weighing 40-50 lbs

  • Less Acceptable: Milk-fed kids weighing less than 20 lbs

Eastern/Greek (Orthodox) Easter:

  • Preferred: Milk-fed goat kids weighing 25-50 lbs

Christmas:

  • Preferred: Milk-fed goat kids weighing 50 lbs and under


Islamic Holidays: Eid ul Adha – The Festival of Sacrifice:

  • Preferred: Unblemished yearling goat kids weighing 60-80 lbs

  • Acceptable: Unblemished yearling goat kids weighing 60-100 lbs

Muharram – Islamic New Year:

  • Preferred: Goat kids with milk teeth weighing 60 lbs

  • Acceptable: Goat kids with milk teeth weighing 40-120 lbs

  • Acceptable: unblemished older animals

  • No preference is given to intact or castrated male kids

Ramadan:

  • Preferred: Goat kids with milk teeth weighing 60 lbs

  • Acceptable: Goat kids with milk teeth weighing 40-120 lbs

  • Acceptable: unblemished older animals

  • No preference is given to intact or castrated male kids

Eid al Fitr – The Breaking of the Ramadan Fast:

  • Preferred: Goat kids with milk teeth weighing 60 lbs

  • Acceptable: Goat kids with milk teeth weighing 40-120 lbs

  • Acceptable: unblemished older animals

  • No preference is given to intact or castrated male kids

Jewish Holidays: Chanukah:

  • Preferred: Young milk-fed goat kids

Holiday Meat Marketing Calendar

​Goat meat has grown in popularity in the US thanks to ethnic markets which center their goat consumption around religious holidays.