Sheep Central | Terry Sim | December 21, 2019
GIVING consumers reasons not to buy wool, despite the fibre’s positives, only succeeds in reducing global wool consumption, especially from Australia, according to Australian exporter leader Matt Hand.
As PETA’s launches an anti-wool Christmas campaign and after comments suggesting mulesing was only a Northern Hemisphere issue, and pain relief messaging was becoming “easier” and its use should be optional, Sheep Central has collected other views on wool and welfare.
Meanwhile, the Australian Wool Exchange this week released statistics indicating market premiums for non-mulesed wool might be affecting grower views and National Wool Declaration rates.
Mr Hand is president of the Australian Council of Wool Exporters and Processors and said although he was unaware of any statistical data, there is a general trade perception that, because Australia is regarded as a mulesing country, it had lost its wool price premium to equivalent wool types from New Zealand, South Africa and South America.
“Today’s reality is that non-mulesed (NM) demand is stronger than ever before,” Mr Hand said.
“It is abundantly clear that orders for apparel wool types often bypass Australia, reverting to regions considered by consumers to offer a more secure supply of NM & CM,” he said.
“Consumers globally are sending us a very clear message, one we shouldn’t choose to ignore.
“It’s a message that gives our industry direction and sets goals and targets to work towards. And it’s not a message we get to debate,” Mr Hand said.
“The reality is, our consumers are demanding non-mulesed wool, whether we agree or like it isn’t a consideration.”