Alpaca Fiber Proves Popular

Ginny Olson of Fevolden Farm Alpacas in Black River Falls can be found at most festivals featuring animal fibers or local businesses. Her family’s farm raises alpacas for fiber and turns those fibers into products for crafts or fashion.

Olson says alpaca fiber is a sought out alternative to sheep’s wool because it is easier to clean and less irritating to the skin for some folks. This is because an alpaca’s fleece lacks lanolin — a natural oil found on sheep’s wool.

Fevolden Farm Alpacas, with ties in the Cottage Grove and Onalaska communities, belongs to the Cottage Grove Chamber of Commerce and Dane Buy Local. Olson says more people are seeking out locally produced items, creating demand for the farm’s 35 alpacas.

Olson and her husband Tom sell alpaca fleece and products out of their home studio in Cottage Grove. The farm also has an online presence, encouraged by the pandemic. Fevolden Farm Alpacas also has a brick-and-mortar store in Black River Falls.