Important comment – November 2018 The NEW Challenge to Mohair MarketingNew England Wool has purchased a small amount of mohair at the last half dozen sales. The company specialises in high quality lines for European mills. Any additional buyer to the AMMO sales is important since it adds competition and has the effect of raising prices. However, NEW has its own agenda and has developed a Quality Assurance system (Sustainawool) to assure its European interests that it is working to develop sustainable and ethical production of the wool it purchases. This brings forward the foreshadowed concerns from mills that Australian wool be free of chemicals and produced using high animal welfare standards. Of interest is the question of who was going to be the authority to implement methods to make the assurance program work. The answer seems to be the buying company. In implementing the QA program for wool, it will buy, NEW has taken on a considerable responsibility. To ensure that grower declarations are factual it proposes an “membership” and audit process. Presumably the company with either have its buyers visit wool producers or contract auditors to carry out the work. It should be said that the QA system as outlined (see www.newenglandwool.com.au) is not that much different from the MLA’s LPA system (which is currently audit able), with the inclusion of animal welfare provisions from the AHA welfare and handling guidelines. So where does this leave the Australian mohair industry? Since NEW has not developed a mohair version of Sustainawool, it has withdrawn from the AMMO auction. Subsidiary questions would be: Does it matter? YES! What will in mean for the wider wool industry? HARD TO SAY, since maybe we don’t know what other wool buying agents’ clients will so. Will Wool Innovation react and how do we (the mohair industry) react? As stated above, there have been rumors of concerns about chemical residues and welfare for some considerable time with hints of some form of QA being required by mills and the general public. To date it’s been too hard, so nothing has happened. Of particular concern has been the news reports of mishandling of Angoras in South Africa and calls for boycotting of mohair, so the issue is altogether too close to home. One might ask what is Mohair South Africa doing about it but that is probably beyond out control. Closer to home, what is AMMO doing about it? The difficulty with Australian mohair marketing is the fibre is bulk classed. Systems like Sustainawool works for individual clips sold under grower lots but how do “we” (AMMO) organise certification of bulk lines? Maybe AMMO could have certified and un-certified lines but who, in the mohair situation, is the authority? And would buyers’ mill clients believe in the process. It’s really all about perception and that means it has to be perfectly true AND believable. It would seem that mohair production is Australia has suddenly become a lot more serious. Mohair is the product, not a by-product of the stud breeding system. We really do need APMC (or maybe just MAL) to organise and lead industry in this new environment. We need a joint effort from all growers, MAL, AMMO, PAM and the buyers. Doug Stapleton.
Mohair Australia Ltd AGM Narrandera Ex-Services Club, Saturday 24th Nov 2018, 1.30pm. RSVP requiredBill Smith, Sandy Smith, Steve Roots and Raymond Williams – the Mohair Australia Board
The AGM Weekend.Both AMMO and Mohair Australia held their AGMs on Saturday 24th following the AMMO sale on Friday 23rd November. The mood of the industry might be described as subdued but supportive of the respective Boards. Charlie Bell was accepted as a Director of AMMO. Discussion centred around the issue of “Sustainability” which was defined is several ways including economic, environmental and consumer assurance issues. The withdrawal of New England Wools from the Australia market due to lack of grower accreditation for animal welfare and chemical use clearly emphasised the need for the Australian mohair industry to implement accreditation systems. Both AMMO and Mohair Australia agreed to work to develop such an accreditation system which would be both auditable and acceptable internationally. It was stated that South Africa has implemented such a system which included catalogue and bale branding of accredited grower’s mohair. Growers without accreditation were said to suffer as much as a 25% discount at auctions. Mohair Australia has already received approval and assistance from AgriFutures Australia to commission a documented methodology to be implemented within 6 months. It is clear that this is a must, not an option. Growers are advised that they will need to examine their production systems to ensure they can comply with both husbandry and welfare requirements. Other issues to be discussed were communications and policy information. The development of the new web site at www.mohair.com.au was discussed with the need for a Facebook page. Volunteers were called for to help with a Facebook page. Input in terms of suggestions, articles and photos were invited to fill the mohair.com.au site (send to [email protected]). The watch word which was adopted was “proactive, not reactive”. DS
Australian Mohair Marketing Organisation Mohair Sale and AGM, 23rd Nov. 2018. RSVP RequiredClick here for independent report on the B2018 AMMO Sale Click here for the catalog and prices November 17th Hunter Region Christmas Party Singleton NSW Sandie Smith 02 4938 7536 Dandenong Show Dandenong Vic October 13/14 Picton Show (fleeces only) Picton NSW Reg Scott 02 4657 2293 Click for Mohair New October September 20 Hunter Region Meeting Heatherbrae NSW Sandie Smith 02 4938 7536 September 8/9 Berry Small Farms Day Berry NSW Reg Scott 02 4657 2293 August 31-9 Sept. Adelaide Show Adelaide S.A.
JulyClick for Mohair News – August Bendigo. Open and Victorian State Final Young Judges winners with Judge Daryl Finch. L to R: Sarah Morris, Molly Cattle, Judge Daryl Finch, Mick Saenyen, Jaycee Ferguson and Tsomo Lakatsang. July Trangie Junior Judging Senior results in Angora section for the Senior’s 1st Brooke Elsley, 2nd Dakota Williams, 3rd Emma Turnbull, 4th Charlie Gillespie & 5th Grace Neeves . Junior age group 1st Thomas Rose, 2nd Sophie Maclean, 3rd Laughlin Wilshire, 4th Kyotee Williams, 5th Charlie Banks. For more Photo’s got to https://www.facebook.com/trangiejuniorjudging/ . April Sydney Royal NATS Camden March Goulburn February Tasmanian Anual Angora Show Judge: Mr GT Ferreira Supreme Angora Granary Lea Angoras G374 Moonshine, C. Buck. Granary Lea Angoras P307 Victor, R.C. Buck Granary Lea Angoras Ar253 Thor, R.C.Doe. Ranga Wagga Angoras 28 Isabella, C.K. Ranga Wagga Angoras 28 Isabella,