Wool shoes could help boost demand for larger microns | North Queensland Registry
Wider wool could be on track to enter a world of amplified demand, literally, as woolen footwear, among other global markets, will become one of the new hotbeds to house the growing supply of wool from higher micron.
Currently 17.9% of Australian wool is larger than 23.5 microns (wool tested in year 2019/20).
Significantly, up to January 2021, Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) exports show that only 12% of total wool exported was larger than 23.5 microns, signaling that a large portion of stocks held by producers in Australia belong to this larger category of wool. .
Australian Wool Innovation chief executive Stuart McCullough said anecdotal evidence surrounding the future of sheep farming has focused on intentions to move from self-replacing merino wool operations to one. more dual-use or full-fledged mutton.
“Although this has not been achieved at this point, enough information has been received to suggest that a switch to a larger type of wool may indeed occur in the 2021/22 season and beyond. “said Mr. McCullough.
“And the sire of choice this season is moving towards a meat breed.”
AWI Science and Welfare Committee Chairman James Morgan said he was fully aware of the increasing level of larger wool across Australia.
And he said the proportion is steadily increasing, especially with the increase in crossbreed ewes in the southern regions.
“We understand that there is an increasing level of woollens in Australia and AWI continues to work hard in this area,” said Morgan.
“It’s a clothing fiber, so it receives proportional expenses in our budget for our team’s off-farm research and development (R&D) as well as marketing. ”
He said projects such as the UK Wool Campaign, which is also drifting into the European sector, have succeeded in reconnecting consumers to the myriad uses of wool, including hardy indoor products. for the home as well as clothing and accessories.
On top of that, he said great attention was being paid to the accessory product space, including shoes and bags.
Footwear is probably the most important growth area for this and our R&D team works with major global brands on shoes using wide wool.
“There is a full-time person in Germany who is working on the development of automotive upholstery, including the use of loose wools,” said Morgan.
“But the biggest area we’re working on is probably double-sided fabrics, where you’ve mixed microns on either side of an item such as a coat, bags, or shoes.
“Footwear is probably the most important growth area for this and our R&D team is working with major global brands on shoes using wide wool. “
With increasingly active lifestyles and a laid back approach to clothing, tapping into the world of runners is a smart choice in today’s global market.
Gone are the days when wool was only used for slippers; There is no doubt that high performance wool sneakers and other varieties of innovative woolen shoes are on the rise.
But Mr Morgan admitted that they must continue to work hard to develop use in the wider wool sector.
“It’s clear that it’s not as smooth as when you’re dealing with thinner micron wool clothes, because it’s a slower market,” he said.
“But we will continue to spend commensurate with those microns.”
He said that many Woolmark licensed products made from loose wool use the Woolmark logo in their marketing activities.
“For example, we have over 130 Woolmark licensees around the world who are bedding companies that market their wool products with the help of the Woolmark brand,” he said.
“Likewise, we have a number of Woolmark licensees who manufacture and market wool rugs and we are also starting to see an increase in the use of Woolmark certified car interiors.
“Our promotion of all Australian wools, regardless of micron, and the Woolmark brand is beneficial for all wools, including the larger wools.”
AWI President Jock Laurie admitted that there is currently a price lull in the broader segment of the market.
“No one in the industry likes to see it,” Mr. Laurie said.
“I would like to think that the work and projects that we are undertaking will certainly stimulate demand in these areas.
“We will continue to explore all the possibilities we can. “
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