Harringtons holding out hope

Bob GarnantCountryman

Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) is keen to prove that there’s no finer feeling than Merino wool, as the association talks up its $1.8 million global marketing campaign.

And Clinton and Karen Harrington, of Darkan, are counting on AWI’s intuitiveness to invest growers’ levy money in a way that secures price stability.

Like many Australian woolgrowers, the Harringtons remain reserved about the current wool price run — but they enjoyed introducing their 18-month-old son, Patrick, to last week’s buoyant market.

“Like the price we received for our 17.4 micron lambs wool, we are hoping for a better future,” he said.

As the couple watched their 150-bale wool clip sell for a farm record of 1521c/kg greasy, on the other side of town AWI chief marketing adviser Robert Langtry spoke of the wool body’s commitment to the industry at the WAFarmers conference.

As the Western Market Indicator finished up 1.8 per cent, closing at 1323c/kg clean, Mr Langtry told the wool conference that AWI would continue its work in the luxury market, while building up new markets in sectors including medical, babies, underwear and sleepwear.

Mr Langtry said the Woolmark Gold Partner program was being used to promote Merino fibre in the luxury Chinese market.

“China represents 27.5 per cent of the global luxury market,” he said.

“Our major wool trading partner is also consuming luxury goods at the highest rate in the world.”

Unlike the western world, Mr Langtry said 70 per cent of consumers of luxury goods in Asia were male and this market was expected to grow by 15 to 20 per cent annually.

“Although they have money and power, they need to be educated on how to spend,” he said.

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