The Boer goat was bred from the indigenous South African goats kept by the Namaqua, San, and Fooku tribes, with some crossing of Indian and European bloodlines being possible. They were selected for meat rather than milk production; due to selective breeding and improvement, the Boer goat has a fast growth rate and excellent carcass qualities, making it one of the most popular breeds of meat goat in the world.
Boer goats tend to gain weight at about the same rate as their sire, so a buck from a proven fast-growing bloodline will command the highest price, as its offspring tend to also be fast growers. The primary market for slaughter goats is a 22–36 kg (49–79 lb) kids should reach marketable size at weaning age. The kid of a proven fast-growing sire might weigh 36 kg (79 lb) at 90 days, while the kid of a poor-quality sire might weigh only 15 kg (33 lb) at 90 days. An average-quality buck will initially be less expensive to purchase, but it can significantly undermine an operation's long-term profitability.