The new Bale Weight Calculator App
"The Bale Weight Calculator has been developed by AWEX as a practical tool to use in the wool shed.” said Mark Grave, AWEX CEO “The Bale Weight Calculator will assist woolgrowers, woolclassers and wool pressers to strategically plan the pressing out of each line of wool.”
The Bale Weight Calculator is available to download onto any smart-phone and is available from both apple/android app stores.
“The App launch is timely as the minimum bale weight will increase to 120kg from 1st January 2016.” said Mark Grave. “Woolgrowers, woolclassers and shed staff should already be thinking of how they will adjust and the Bale Weight Calculator App will help them work through the options.”
“Nobody sets out to press low weight bales but with some planning it is possible to optimise the number of complete bales and reduce costs through the wool supply chain. It’s the unintended consequences of low weight bales that cause concern, such as higher per kilogram costs for services charged on a per bale basis including transport, warehousing and testing costs.”
The new Bale Weight Calculator is easy to use and requires the user to enter only:
Mark Grave said “Once the above information is entered, the Bale Weight Calculator will calculate 5 wool pressing options. Each option will identify the number of bales pressed and if applicable, the kilograms remaining in a butt.”
The user can only enter bale weights between 120kg – 204kg.
Wool buyers have expressed their concerns about the increased per kilogram costs they face for services that incur a per bale fee such as transport and dumping costs. Mark Grave said “Woolgrowers also face per bale costs, so it makes sense to reduce costs where possible.”
For more information contact:
Mark Grave, AWEX CEO
Ph: 02 9428 6100 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
David Cother, AWEX Wool Services Manager
Ph: 02 9428 6100 Email: email@example.com
To download the AWEX Bale Weight Calculator go to:
Apple App store https://itunes.apple.com or Google Play https://play.google.com/store/apps
Kangaroo Island joins AWN
Kangaroo Island brand wool knitwear will soon step on to the world stage through a deal that has been signed with Australian Wool Network, a major wool marketer.
The deal between AWN and Kangaroo Island Wool is called DNA, the ‘direct network advantage’ wool supply program, and has been developed in conjunction with the company’s knitwear manufacturing business called Hysport Pty Ltd.
The end product is the luxury knitwear label MerinoSnug, one of Hysport’s premier clothing brands, and is made from Australian merino wool and New Zealand possum fur. As well as the MerinoSnug brand, the swing tag and point of sale signage will identify the contribution of wool grown on Kangaroo Island.
The knitwear is manufactured wholly in Australia using state of the art ‘whole of garment’ knitting machines and the MerinoSnug knitwear range is in high demand particularly from the tourism and travel retail sector. The finished garment is extremely warm to wear and light in weight.
The products will be available from 230 retail outlets around Australia including airports, which also gives access to international travellers and avoids a seasonal market downturn.
Plans are also in place to distribute the products through major airports and retailers throughout the world.
An important marketing device for consumers will be a QR tag (Quick Response Code) on each garment that can be scanned by a smart phone to show a video of how and where the wool is grown on Kangaroo Island.
The DNA scheme that has been developed by Australian Wool Network is the first in Australia that allows wool growers to be able to follow the journey of their wool from bale to retail. This satisfies a long felt need by many growers who want to know where their wool goes, a desire that is consistent with the ‘paddock to plate’ trend so prevalent today with food producers.
Chairman of Kangaroo Island Wool Christine Berry said that the signing of the deal with AWN was the culmination of four years’ work.
‘We started on the concept of a grower to garment proposal in 2011 when nineteen members came together to form Kangaroo Island Wool. Eighteen of our members are wool growers and the nineteenth is our local vet who supervises all our sheep health and genetic breeding work.
“We run 700,000 merino and British breed sheep on the island which produces 3 million kg of wool per year. Our fleeces are of exceptional quality and ranges between 17.6 and 20.6 microns and many of our growers use Australia’s top 10 per cent recorded merino sires,” Christine said.
Australian Wool Network Managing Director John Colley said they preferred the term wool marketing rather than wool broking to describe their business.
“We started in 1999 with a vision to bring wool growers and processors closer together.
It sounds simple and the first steps were to work more closely with the existing processors which to date has worked well and we still use this approach today.
“But we wanted to go further and connect the woolgrower and their wool to the garment and this we achieved last year when we purchased Hysport, a Melbourne knitwear manufacturer.
“By controlling wool processing from bale to retail we are in charge of some of the associated costs, enabling us to potentially offer a better price for specific wool types, as well as be much more aware of consumer desires,” he said.
Wool growers wanting to find out more about the DNA wool supply program should contact their local AWN Wool Specialist.
Sydney Show wool sale
This weeks Northern Region wool sale was held in a purpose built auction room at Sydney Show Sheep Pavilion. The venue provided a perfect opportunity to showcase, arguably, Australia's largest open cry auction selling system.
Onlookers were intrigued and fascinated at the spectacle as Australian Wool Network auctioneers and others struted their stuff on the podium selling wool from Australia to the world.
A good representation from buyers attended the sale and observers (and wool growers) were treated by spirited bidding over both days as buyers chased Merino types through most of the micron ranges. Increases of 20 cents were common through the mid-range of 19 to 21-microns. Part-tender types came under particular attention and narrowed the price gap to the 35nkt types.
The standard out transaction for AWN at this week’s sale in Sydney was for C Munsie & Son CM/Kelvin Vale/New England. Three lots of Fine/Ultra Fine wool attracted the attention of G Schneider on a/c of Ermenegildo Zegna. Lots ranged from 15 to 15.3 micron but importantly were of exceptional style and strength. Difficult seasonal conditions in the New England over these past 12 months have made achieving strength and retaining style a challenge. Congratulations!
AWN were pleased with how the sale ran and a special thanks to AWEX for their efforts in bringing it all together in conjuction with the Royal Agricultural Society. Of particular note was the AWEX display board for visitors to the auction - highlighting the total value of sales for the week was certainly an eye opener for many show goers.
AWN increases wool pipeline
Australian Wool Network has acquired Victorian knitwear manufacturer Hysport to provide a channel for grower feedback from wool bale to retail.
The acquisition will allow AWN to move from brokerage services to vertically integrated wool marketing throughout the pipeline.
A third generation Victorian knitter and retailer, Hysport Pty Ltd manufactures garments made from pure wool and wool blends, which are marketed under the brands, Merinosnug and Emaroo.
Australian Wool Network managing director John Colley said the acquisition would change the face of wool marketing for the company.
Mr Colley said AWN had spent the past year investigating ways to add value to wool growing businesses and proactively drive demand for client’s wool.
“Hysport provides us with a reliable means to deliver a genuine connection throughout the wool processing pipeline from wool grower to consumer,’’ he said.
“One of the key attributes of Hysport, and a significant factor in our deliberations to secure the business, was the many exclusive and large contracts for certain product types in already established international markets.
“This is an exciting phase in AWN’s growth, as we take the opportunity to diversify our business and, at the same time, give our clients potentially different platforms to trade their wool.’’
Established in 1999, AWN now ranks as Australia’s third largest wool broker, marketing more than 235,000 bales of wool a year for over 5000 growers.
Based in Melbourne, Hysport manufactures up to 72 different garments, retails at over 230 outlets across Australia and uses Australian wool yarn processed through network partners in New Zealand and Italy.
Hysport chief executive officer Rod Murray said the factory ranked among the two largest knitwear manufacturers in Australia and used “whole garment’’ (seamless) technology.
Mr Murray said there had been no contact between woolgrowers and Hysport in the past, with wool sourced on micron specification only.
“We can now have more detail on the wool including fibre length and crimp – our products require a micron range of 17-24,’’ he said.
“The alliance with AWN has enabled me to attend my first wool auction and on-farm visits with wool growers are planned.’’
John Colley said the acquisition allowed AWN to be actively involved in creating consumer demand for wool, under a label carrying the “Australian Made’’ logo.
“MerinoSnug and Emaroo are marketed directly to overseas tourists through contracts with the world’s largest airport retailer,’’ he said.
“Purely Merino and Purely Australian are large customers of Hysport with enormous retail reach, and AWN will work closely with Purely Merino to increase demand and sales.’’
Mr Colley said certain types of wool could be made to specification for speciality products and programs.
“We can now offer an ever greater commitment to Australian grown, made and exported wool through business integration,’’ he said.
“This will help drive demand for our client’s wool by bringing wool growers, processors and consumers together.’’
For further information please contact John Colley on 0417 732 601.
New store opens in Sydney CBD
AWN’s commitment to driving demand for Australian wool has taken another exciting step forward with its Hedrena retail division opening the doors of its new store in the heart of Sydney’s CBD.
The Hedrena Piccadilly store is located in Stockland Piccadilly Shopping Centre and gives the company great exposure with its highly prominent location and provides ease of access for new and existing customers.
As a wool broker, AWN is not just selling wool, the company is adding value to its clients’ product and this commitment has never been more evident than with the purchase of the Merino clothing company Hedrena in July this year.
The opening of this new retail store is another exciting step in this journey to showcase Australian wool through the manufacture of garments made from wool grown by AWN clients.
Hedrena will be celebrating the opening of its new store in November where customers will receive 10 per cent off storewide for four days only, from November 17-20.
New collections are arriving now in time for the grand opening sale. This is a great opportunity to experience the beauty and benefits of garments made from Australian grown Merino wool.
Store manager Wanda Quagliato says she is extremely excited about the new, convenient location and the range of garments on offer.
“Our customers are very excited. We have 1400 units of stock on the floor in our amazing new store so this is a wonderful time for Hedrena,’’ she said.
“We have plenty of stock on hand which can be worn in summer including short-sleeve, cap-sleeve and sleeveless tops which are made from a fine-knit jersey fabric. As this is a natural fibre it breathes and takes moisture away from the body so you always feel comfortable and fresh.
“Our skirts, tops and lightweight trousers, in a mix of colours, are ideal for the office, weekend or travel. You have to wear these garments and feel just how cool they are.’’
Hedrena CEO Ben Earl says new customers are discovering the store every day.
“The partnership between Hedrena and AWN has resulted in this highly prominent store in the heart of the CBD becoming a reality,’’ he said.
“Our goal is to reach a new audience and we have been seeing this from day one. This store creates a natural apparel experience for customers with the hero being Australian wool. It is the first store to map the Australian wool journey with displays of fleece, yarn and knitted fabric in store.
“It is your one-stop shop for Australian wool apparel.’’
Mr Earl said the strategic synergy between Hedrena and AWN had unlocked a wealth of specialised Australian wool knowledge.
“This new store definitely connects the businesses. It showcases the cohesiveness between the two companies. Everyone is sharing the same vision.’’
The new Hedrena store is located at Shop 24-25 Stockland Piccadilly, 210 Pitt Street Sydney. More information can be found by calling 02 9194 3232 or visiting www.hedrena.com.au
Opening hours: Monday- Wednesday: 9am- 5.30pm, Thursday: 9am -8pm, Friday: 9am-5.30pm, Saturday: 9am-4pm and Sunday 10am-4pm.
For further information please contact Ben Earl on 0438 721 400
Wool and Skin – Putting an End to the Myth of Wool Allergy
BRUSSELS, BELGIUM, 15 December 2016 – Like a stubborn stain, the idea that wool is an allergen just won’t go away. Recent headlines about the uniforms of American Airlines flight attendants scapegoated the wool in the fabric even though the manufacturer’s standard uniform comprises more polyester than wool, and testing by the flight attendants union found detectable levels of chemicals commonly found in pesticides, fungicides and fertilizers.
Moreover, the union reported concerns that the manufacturing of the fabric, not its fibre content, was the source of the problem. Even so, the focus came down to wool “allergy.”
What would Martha Stewart do?
First, the facts. It is a common misconception that wool can cause an allergic reaction. Studies show that all fibres, not only wool, can provoke a prickle sensation on the skin if the fibre end is coarse enough. This prickle can be itchy and cause irritation, but it is not allergy.
While fine fibres bend and brush against the skin, coarse fibres tend to be more rigid and can trigger nerve endings in the skin’s surface.
The wool fibre exists in many levels of fineness, which is measured in microns. Most of the wool in clothing has an average diameter between 11.5 and 24 microns. Wool over 24 microns is generally used in interior textiles or outer-layer clothing that is not in contact with the skin.
Notably, so-called allergic reactions to wool garments have decreased within the last 50 years, coinciding with reduced use of many products previously used in the finishing stage of textile production.
New research shows wearing wool next to skin has significant benefits
Next, the news. Far from being an allergen, recent research conducted by The Woolmark Company has demonstrated that wearing superfine wool garments against the skin is therapeutic in the treatment of eczema (atopic dermatitis).
Dr Lynda Spelman of Queensland Institute of Dermatology says that participants in a study she conducted showed substantially reduced eczema symptoms when they wore superfine wool undergarments. None of the participants displayed an allergic or irritant reaction.
“We have seen substantial reductions in skin dryness, redness and itchiness and in the measured area of inflammation – and for a number of the patients, this is the first time a real solution to their condition has been presented,” Dr Spelman said.
She says the results appear to relate partly to the unique moisture management properties of wool.
“Wool is a hygroscopic fibre which has the ability to absorb up to 36% of its weight in water and create a thermal buffer between the skin and the external environment. The wool appears to be keeping the moisture content of the wearer’s delicate skin at the levels it should be, preventing it from becoming too dry and therefore reducing the risks of bacterial infection and the desire to scratch the itch.”
These findings are being documented and are due to be published in high-rating dermatological journals following peer review. Once published, The Woolmark Company and the International Wool Textile Organisation will take this message to the wool supply chain and consumer markets around the world.
“Many patients believed they were allergic to wool. However, we didn’t have a single patient withdraw from the study due to any types of intolerance of these superfine wools.” – Angus Ireland, The Woolmark Company
At a recent IWTO meeting in Biella, Italy, Woolmark Company Fibre Advocacy and Eco Credential Program Manager Angus Ireland described the progress being made in understanding wool’s effects on health and wellbeing.
“The traditional advice to eczema sufferers to indiscriminately avoid wool against the skin, based on early commentaries that failed to distinguish between wool fibre types, can now be modified to include superfine Merino as a recommended next-to-skin clothing choice,” Mr Ireland said.
“It’s interesting to note that in the studies conducted, many patients believed they were allergic to wool. However, we didn’t have a single patient withdraw from the study due to any types of intolerance of these superfine wools.”
With a world-wide membership encompassing the wool pipeline from sheep to shop, the International Wool Textile Organisation represents the interests of the global wool trade. By facilitating research and development and maintaining textile industry standards, IWTO ensures a sustainable future for wool.
For more information on wool and skin health, visit www.iwto.org/wool-skin
AWEX Bale Weight Calculator
Kangaroo Island joins AWN
Sydney Show wool sale
AWN increases wool pipeline
New store opens in Sydney CBD
Putting an end to wool "allergy"