News Flash

China suspends imports of wool from South Africa due to an FMD outbreak

25 February 2019
China’s Customs Bureau and the China Inspection and Quarantine Bureau have suspended all greasy wool imports from South Africa. This action came as a result of an outbreak of FMD in a remote northern province of South Africa where cattle, not sheep, are kept. The region has been placed under quarantine and other measures have been implemented. The South African wool industry is waiting on further details from China’s Inspection and Quarantine Bureau about its position on imports of greasy wool…

Australian shorn wool production down by 10.8% in 2018/19

19 November 2018
The Australian Wool Production Forecasting Committee met on Wednesday 14th November to review its forecast for the 2018/19 season. As I said in the Weekly Newsletter of 12th October, the Committee decided to bring forward its meeting from December to November, partly in response to concern around the world about the wool supply available from Australia this season. The new forecast from the Committee is that shorn wool production will be 305 mkg in 2018/19, down by 10.8% on 341 mkg in 2017/18.…

Industry News

Escalation of US-China trade tensions adds more risk to slowing global economy

20 May 2019
The Trump Administration surprised most observers on 9th May by announcing that 25% import duties would be imposed on around US$200 billion of imported products from China (an increase from the existing 10% duty), effective immediately. On investigation, the products on which the 25% will be imposed are essentially the same set of products the US announced last September. The US didn’t impose the higher duties at the time as China came to the negotiation table. Those negotiations have now…

Australian wool export value hits 21 year high

13 May 2019
The latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Australia’s wool exports shows that the volume of exports lifted by 4% in March compared with a year earlier, while the value of wool exports lifted by 9% in March. Exports to a number of the major destinations for Australian wool recorded good increases in March, led by a 9% year-on-year increase in the volume of exports to China (while the value of exports to China was 15% higher). The increase in wool export volumes in March comes…

Over half wool at auction Non-Mulesed, Pain Relief or Ceased Mulesed

06 May 2019
The latest statistics on mulesing status shows that for the first time ever, over half the wool offered at auction this season to April was Non-Mulesed, mulesed with Pain Relief or Ceased Mulesed. Almost 70% of wool offered at auction came with a National Wool Declaration. However, the drought in eastern Australia has caused declines in the volume of wool in all mulesing status categories, although the decline in the volume of Non-Mulesed and Pain Relief wool is only small in contrast to the…

Australian shorn wool production forecast in 2019/20 to fall to lowest since 1924/25

29 April 2019
The Australian Wool Production Forecasting Committee (AWPFC) met on Monday and reviewed its forecast of Australian shorn wool production for 2018/19. It also decided in its first forecast for 2019/20. The Committee, based on feedback from the state committees, revised its forecast for 2018/19 down further to 298 mkg greasy. This is a 12.7% decline on shorn wool production in 2017/18. It is lower than the 305 mkg greasy that the Committee forecast in November. Seasonal conditions have remained…

Sustainability, Traceability and Animal Welfare - major themes at the 2019 IWTO Congress

29 April 2019
The major themes through-out the 2019 IWTO Congress held in Venice, Italy on 9th to 11th April were sustainability, traceability, animal welfare and supply chain transparency. These themes were mentioned in virtually every session, from the opening session, through the market intelligence session, the retail session, the wool interiors session to the final session at Benetton. The Congress’ opening session on Tuesday featured Livia Firth, the founder and creative director of Eco-Age, an…

Changing Dynamic for Global Wool Industry

29 April 2019
Chris Wilcox, Executive Director of NCWSBA, gave a presentation at the 88th IWTO Congress in Venice Italy on the situation and outlook for the global wool industry. The theme was “A changing dynamic’, highlighting the significant divergence between the prices for Merino wool (high) and for broad wool (low) which has been evident in the past 2 years or more. In the past, prices for wool across the micron range moved in broadly the same direction. There has been a fundamental change in the…

Economic growth begins to falter but consumer confidence remains high

29 April 2019
There are growing fears that economic growth around the world is slowing at a faster rate than expected. This quicker than expected slow-down in growth comes after a synchronised lift in economic growth in 2017 and 2018 around the world, led by a strong pace of economic growth in the US which was fuelled by wide-ranging tax cuts implemented by the Trump administration. This has led to very low unemployment levels in the US and rising wages. In response, the US Federal Reserve started to lift…

China’s wool clothing exports fall in 2018

25 March 2019
The data on the wool trade for China for the full 2018 year shows that China’s exports of wool top, wool yarn and wool fabric rose by between 3% and 7% in 2018. However, its exports of finished wool products fell away. The largest drop of 36% was for woven wool garments. You may remember that exports of these products saw a massive jump in 2017, driven by exports to Nigeria and some other African countries. The Chinese industry attributed the increase to the Belt and Road Initiative. It seems…

Value of Australian fine and superfine wool exports jumps by 50%

18 March 2019
The latest data on Australia’s wool exports show that the volume of exports lifted in January compared with a year earlier. This is the first year-on-year monthly increase seen this season. All of the top ten export destinations recorded an increase, with the exception of India which saw a 5% decline in exports. For the 2018/19 season to January, the volume of exports from Australia was down by 15.4%, but the value of exports was 4.3% higher. There are some significant differences between the…


Online training for Emergency Animal Disease

26 November 2018
There is now a Wool Broker and Livestock Agents Online Training Course available to help prepare for if and when there is an outbreak of an Emergency Animal Disease in Australia, such as Foot and Mouth Disease. The course has been developed under the direction of WoolProducers Australia and SheepProducers Australia with funding from Animal Health Australia. The course is designed to inform and train wool and livestock selling agents about how to recognise and respond to a suspected Emergency…

Winner of the 2016 NCWSBA Broker Award Announced

25 August 2016
The Winner of the 2016 NCWSBA Wool Broker Award was announced at the Wool Week dinner in Melbourne on 25th August. The Winner of the 2016 Award is Lachlan Sutton of Elders. In making their decision, the Selection Panel noted they found the calibre of all three presentations to be excellent. They also found it difficult to separate the finalists and that all would be very worthy winners. The Panel noted that some of the most pleasing aspects from the finalists were: their obvious passion and…

National Council of Wool Selling Brokers of Australia



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