Cashmere wool comes from the downy undercoat of cashmere goats. These goats are bred specifically for their fleece; the cashmere fleece is removed in early spring after its maximum length is reached.
Cashmere goats are chosen for the coarseness and singular color of the hair in areas of their body that are sheared for wool. The quality of the fleece depends on its length, its diameter and the amount of crimping. Cashmere goats are either sheared or combed to remove the fleece, and then the guard hair is separated from the cashmere. The cashmere fiber is crimped and soft, and according to cashmere industry regulations, it must be at least 1 1/4 inches long and have an average diameter of less than 19 microns.