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Cashmere and Camel Hair Manufacturers Institute

Cashmere and Camel Hair Fact Sheet

  CASHMERE CAMEL HAIR
CLASSIFICATION Specialty hair fiber.
SOURCE The Cashmere (Kashmir) or down goat. From the fine, soft undercoat or underlayer of hair. The straighter and coarser outer coat is called guard hair. The two-humped Bactrian camel. From the fine, soft undercoat or underlayer of hair. The straighter and coarser outer coat is called guard hair.
GEOGRAPHIC ORIGIN From the high plateaus of Asia. Significant supplier countries are: China, Mongolia and Tibet. Today, little is supplied by the Kashmir Province India, from which its name is derived. The cashmere products of this area first attracted the attention of Europeans in the early 1800s. Significant supplier countries are: China, Mongolia, Iran, Afghanistan, Russia, New Zealand, Tibet and Australia.
GATHERING PROCESS The specialty animal hair fibers are collected during molting seasons when the animals naturally shed their hairs. Goats molt during a several-week period in spring. In China and Mongolia, the down is removed by hand with a coarse comb. The animals are sheared in Iran, Afghanistan, New Zealand and Australia. The specialty animal hair fibers are collected during molting seasons when the animals naturally shed their hairs. From late spring to early summer, camels shed their hair. Fallen clumps of hair are still collected by traditional hand-gathering methods.
PRODUCTION The coarse hairs and down hairs of the cashmere goat and camel are separated by a mechanical process known as dehairing.
ANNUAL YIELD Up to one pound of fiber per goat, with the average 4 to 6 ounces of underdown. Approximately 8 to 10 kilograms.
WARMTH Natural light-weight insulation without bulk.
  Extremely warm to protect goats from cold mountain temperatures. Fibers are highly adaptable and are easily constructed into fine or thick yarns, and light to heavy-weight fabrics. Appropriate for all climates. A high moisture content allows insulation properties to change with the relative humidity in the air. Has thermostatic properties which protect and insulate the camel in high mountain cold and blizzards while keeping cool in desert heat. Camel hair garments are worn by native desert travelers to protect them from the heat. These same characteristics are transferred to fabrics made from camel hair.
HAND Luxuriously soft, with high napability and loft.
NATURAL COLORS Gray, brown and white. Golden tan.
DYEABILITY Capable of dyeing to a broad range of colors. Accepts dye equally as well as wool.
BEST BLENDS Pure virgin* fiber or blended with wool only. Blends with nylon or tri-blends with wool and nylon in woven patterns may indicate the use of inferior quality recycled** fiber. Nylon, however, is used with virgin quality cashmere in hosiery and some other knitted products. Pure virgin* fiber or blended with wool only. Blends with nylon or tri-blends with wool and nylon in woven patterns may indicate the use of inferior quality recycled** fiber. Nylon, however, is used with virgin quality camel hair in hosiery and some other knitted products.
GARMENT CARE Dry clean wovens; knit goods may be handwashed.
END USES Men's and women's coats, jackets and blazers, skirts, hosiery, sweaters, gloves, scarves, mufflers, caps and robes.
*VIRGIN FIBER New fiber that has not been processed in any way, or has been made into yarns, fabrics or garments for the first time.
**RECYCLED FIBER Fibers reclaimed from scraps or fabrics that were previously woven or felted and may or may not have been used by the consumer.

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