Excellent selling season for NZ fine wool despite the global disruption
Dave Burridge, New Zealand South Island Auction Manager, PGG Wrightson Wool puts a positive spin on what has been a very unusual year. He says: As the present fine wool sale season is drawing to an end, mid micron and merino returns to wool growers have largely recovered to pre-lockdown levels. Although returns are still back on what was sold in the previous two years, they remain well ahead of long-term historical averages.
Increased volumes have come forward for the Christchurch selling bench. For the season to date, 10 per cent more fine wool has been offered for sale than this time last year. In addition, clearances being well up, with our sales since July having achieved a 95 per cent clearance rate.
Compared to offerings elsewhere around the globe, prices for New Zealand fine wool this season have been highly competitive, reflecting the excellent quality of our clip.
Wool pricing trends generally mirror those achieved across the Tasman, though our market and selected offerings have been well insulated from large volumes offered elsewhere, and global volatility that is yet to settle from the influence of Covid-19.
Overall quality and competitive value have been further enhanced by the addition of a representative of a major Australian fine wool exporting company, Australian Merino Export Ltd, who joined our buyers’ bench again this season in Christchurch. Their presence further underpins and broadens the competition for local wool.
Most of the fine wool taken through our auction room is consigned to the world’s textile manufacturing hub, China. Long term demand derives from trends in the active sportswear market. While much of the merino wool we produce is ultimately destined for retail in China, what is not used there is re-exported in garments worn in first world countries.
With all wool sales now live streamed, the transparency of the auction system is further enhanced, providing farmers with the option to watch their clip sell in real time, or just follow the action on a smartphone or mobile device if they so choose.
This has been another remarkable fine wool selling season, especially considering the pressure the pandemic has imposed on the market.
Photo Left to Right: Jason Everson Wool Product ＆ Innovation Manager and Dave Burridge South Island Auction Manager, at the PGG Wrightson Christchurch Store Auction room
Source: PGG Wrightson Wool