ARI & CLAA Registries
The Alpaca Registry, Inc. (ARI), which is closely aligned with the Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association (AOBA), is the organization that oversees registration of alpacas in the United States.
The Canadian Livestock Records Corp. (CLRC), in conjunction with the Canadian Llama and Alpaca Association (CLAA), handles all the registrations for alpacas in Canada.
At the end of 1998, both ARI and CLAA closed their registries to any new alpacas. No Alpaca can be registered with either the ARI or the CLAA unless both parents are already in the registry. Anyone can import alpacas into North American but they cannot be included in either registry.
Every alpaca in both registries is DNA blood typed for proof of parentage before the application for registration is approved. Registrations are not transferable between the two registries.
All the alpacas that were imported from Chile, Bolivia or Peru before the registries were closed had to be screened in order to be accepted by either registry. Any alpaca that did not pass screening was not allowed to be registered.
All alpacas had to be screened in their county of origin and then transported to Canada or the U.S. This rule was adopted as one of the earlier imports was not screened until the alpacas landed in Canada. Subsequently, some of the alpacas did not pass screening (mainly because their fiber was a bit coarse) and therefore we have a few unregistered alpacas in North America.
Each alpaca had to be screened separately by people working for U.S. importers and people working for Canadian importers. The same standards were used by both sets of screeners, however a fee was payable to each registry for every alpaca screened. The fee to be screened for entry into the ARI was $500 US per alpaca.
Some Canadian importers had their alpacas screened for entry into the Canadian registry but elected not to pay the fee to have their alpacas screened for entry into the ARI. At this time there was a reciprocal agreement on the table between Canada and U.S. and these importers were confident that their alpacas would be able to be registered with the ARI at a later date.
Consequently, the reciprocal agreement was not completed and these imported alpacas have never received entry into the ARI. You often hear these alpacas referred to as single-registered, whereas alpacas that were screened by both countries and received entry in to both registries are often referred to as double- or dual-registered.
It is also of interesting to note some Canadian importers intended to have their alpacas screened for entry into both registries but were not able to accomplish this before the closing of the registries on Dec. 31, 1998. Only alpacas that are registered with the ARI can be shown at AOBA-sponsored shows in the U.S. and only alpacas that are registered with the CLRC can be shown in CLAA-sponsored shows in Canada. Alpacas from either registry can be shown in International shows as well as all other local shows.
There is really no difference in the quality of the alpacas that are single- or double-registered. The majority of single- registered alpacas are offspring of alpacas that passed the same screening process as the double-registered alpacas. The real difference is the price. Double-registered alpacas sell for three or four times more than their single-registered counterparts.
For anyone wishing to raise alpacas mainly for the fiber, single-registered alpacas are a more cost effective way to go.