Producer Spotlight: Laurel Woods Farm
When Laurel Kargel was a child she desperately wanted a goat! She was optimistic about her chances when she skipped a middle school dance to visit a friend who raised goats. Upon pulling up to the farm, her Dad observed a huge goat nonchalantly standing on top of the friend’s family car and promptly declared, “No goats!”
Laurel’s interest persisted into adulthood but she focused her efforts and time on her horses and career, which included demanding jobs in management and sales within the gift industry. Twelve years ago she was down to one horse and decided to get two Nigerian Dwarf goats largely to keep her company. She chose this breed because they produce a large amount of high-quality milk with a good percentage of fat. She knew that one day she wanted to make soap with goats milk due to its anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties, but she didn’t know the full scope of the benefits she and her future customers would experience!
In the Fall of 2016 she took the leap and left her job as a sales rep and successfully sold her handcrafted goats milk bar soap in delightful farm animal shapes largely as Christmas gifts. She knew she was onto something and enthusiastically expanded her soap product line and named her company “The Traveling Goat.” She is especially proud of her Pup Sudz Goats Milk Dog Shampoo and the health and quality of life transformations reported by dog owners. Her website features the success story of “Meelo” who got permanent relief from allergies and associated hair thinning and itchy skin. This product has developed quite the reputation on local farms like Pacific Farms, where staff frequently say, “Just go get the soap” for everything from horse rain rot to poison ivy to skunk spray!
The Traveling Goat products are great for this sizzling summer and for spending more time in the great outdoors. Her Road Trip Moisturizing Spritz and Wash is a wonderful all-in-one cleanser and lotion for hikers and campers and is safe for rivers and streams. Laurel put this product to the test during her time in the dry heat of Arizona, where she found she needed no additional lotion. Her Bug Sudz Moisturizing Spritz has a refreshing lemongrass scent and repels mosquitos, ticks, and biting flies. Her products contain natural ingredients with an olive oil base, shea butter and vitamin and mineral-rich goats milk. Laurel points out another benefit: “My products end up saving you money. I don’t need additional astringents, special face cleansers and lotions. I also have more room on my shelves from eliminating so many cleaning products.”
Laurel worked hard to learn all about goat care and had important mentors along the way. She knows that farm fresh high-quality goat milk from happy healthy goats is the key to the beneficial properties of her products. Her herd now includes six does, two bucks, and five baby goats. Her goat Faith is the inspiration behind her logo. One goat, Nancy, is a rescue LaMancha who came to her pregnant, malnourished, and unable to walk properly on her back legs. She may need a little extra support and attention due to chronic hoof deformity, but she is a thriving lovable, protective member of the pack who loves to run, spin, and play. Her goats know their names and never tire of their sliding boards and Princess Palace!
Laurel is thrilled to report she and the goats and her two dogs will be moving Laurel Woods Farm to a new four acre property in Beaverdam in October! It’s such a great time to support this farm, your health, your pets’ skin health, and even your pocketbook by adding her remarkably versatile goats milk products to your cart! Check out her full line-up on the RVAG Marketplace. She’s offering $2 off refills of her 8 oz bottle products!