People interested in entering the industry always ask, ""what do you do with your fleeces?"
Remember 17 microns in wool, is equivilant to 20 microns in alpaca, so what could we get for our 15 microns and under. if we had enough volume for the manufacturers to buy.
BY TERRY SIM
04 Nov, 2010 01:50 PM
WOOL prices have reached their highest levels in US dollar terms in 20 years, with growers finally positioned to start reaping the benefits of domestic Chinese spending power and a long-term global shift in demand.
The Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) closed last week in its dearest territory of the year at 949 cents – or US926c.
Independent Commodity Services analyst, Andrew Woods, said this was the highest the EMI had traded in US dollar terms since March, 1989, when it peaked at US945c.
He said limited supply had been a big driver of last week’s rally which had lifted the EMI by 18c.
Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) director, Chick Olsson, tipped wool prices had more room to move in the next 12 months.
Mr Olsson and AWI’s market intelligence and trade reporting manager, Paul Swan, said new markets and changing demand for Merino wool had helped swing wool’s fortunes.
Dr Swan said the addition of the major emerging consumer market in China to traditional markets in western Europe, North America and Japan was starting to be reflected in wool prices.
“There had also been a shift over the longer term to lighter weight fabrics for more luxury lightweight, casual, sports/outdoor and ‘baselayer’ or close-to-skin clothing,” he said.
“What this means is you can make more square metres of fabric from every kilogram of wool.
“This adds up to a shift toward more retailed dollars per kilogram of our fibre and the grower shares that benefit.”
Dr Swan said the “third wave” wool was riding was the increasing consumer interest in all things natural.
“So it is basically a real confluence of events.
“Consumers increasingly are preferring natural safer products, there are more wealthy people able to afford wool and we’ve got the right sort of products to supply them with.”
West Australian wool merchant, Peter Scanlan, who is just back from Europe, said he saw shops there full of wool and wool blends that were reasonably priced and extremely fashionable.
“Consumers are buying and creating the demand we are seeing as a result, with Italy the main driver for fine wools,” he said.
“We saw last week a two-and-a-half year high of the price premium for a 19 micron type, over a 21 micron type rapidly heading back up towards its long-term average.