Alpaca Registry, Inc. (ARI), headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska, is the largest, non-profit alpaca pedigree registry in the world. ARI (the only organization of its kind) was created by the alpaca industry association for the benefit of alpaca breeders in the United States, but expanded to also register alpacas in Canada and other countries throughout the world. ARI's accurate data base maintains the genealogy of nearly 250,000 alpacas. In addition, breeding information using EPD data enables breeders to gain better control of their breeding programs.
Using advanced DNA technology, currently 18 markers plus an additional 6 if necessary, ARI validates the parentage of alpacas submitted for pedigree registration. Once an alpaca's parentage has been validated, ARI issues a registration certificate that provides known lineage and assigns a unique number to each alpaca. ARI (itself) is a tremendous asset to the entire alpaca community. Created in 1988, the ARI methodology and database are some of the most sophisticated and accurate of any livestock industry anywhere in the world.
The vast majority of alpacas in North America are registered with ARI. The Registry protects the existing alpaca gene pool and helps ensure each breeder's investment is enhanced (protected from cross-breeding with other camelids) and precludes the registration of an alpaca if its parents were not ARI registered alpacas. ARI is currently a closed registry which means that every alpaca that is registered must be DNA tested and validated as an offspring of two other ARI registered parents. If this cannot be validated, the alpaca will not be registered.
In addition to maintaining the growing database of alpacas and DNA records, ARI manages lists of animals owned or sold by owners. Certificates of Registration are printed and provided to owners, displaying up to five generations of ancestry. Online queries available to ARI members can provide recorded and validated ancestry for any alpaca in the database regardless of the number of generations, as well as other information.