Tax Code Spurs Llamapalooza

The upper crust is using alpaca farming as a huge tax write-off
By Colleen Barry,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 5, 2007 9:29 AM CDT
Female alpacas gather together on a farm in Burlington, Washington.   (KRT Photos)

(Newser) – Some very ulikely agrarians—doctors, lawyers, computer programmers—have spurred a huge boom in alpaca farming in the last few years, not for the profits, of which there are rarely any, but for the huge tax write-offs. "What can't I write off?" Manhattanite Rob Bruce says. "I write off food, water, fences, the guy who cuts the lawn."

The surge is spurred by changes in the tax code allowing people to write off 100% of business-related expenses in the first year instead of over several years. Additional discounts are available for farmers -- even alpaca farmers. "I had never stepped foot on a farm before," says accountant Brion Smoker, but his alpacas reduced his taxable income by over $40,000.