The American Wool Council (AWC) wants to remind producers that participation in the industry’s wool quality programs requires annual self certification. The council continues to encourage all producers to participate in the certified wool clip program in an effort to improve the quality of the U.S. wool clip. The program is designed to let purchasers of U.S. wool know what efforts growers have taken at shearing time to ensure a quality clip.
“The self-certification program requires the producer to submit the declaration and checklist each year,” said Ron Cole, American Sheep Industry Association consultant. “An annual re-certification offers producers the opportunity to review the steps that can be followed to improve the quality of a clip and to let the buyers know what steps they have followed at shearing time to prepare their clip.”
The certified program points out 10 steps that growers can follow to improve the quality of their clip. A few of the items are:
sort sheep by wool type prior to shearing;
package different types of wool and off-sorts separately;
use new and approved wool packaging materials;
label wool bales properly and keep a record; and
notify the buyer of the steps taken to improve the wool clip. The buyers of U.S. wool are also being asked to support the wool quality improvement programs by asking for certified wool clips.
“The reputation of the U.S. wool clip depends on the participation of all growers, large or small,” continued Cole. “In order for the wool council programs to be successful, it must start at the farm with quality improvement.”
The forms and information about the certified wool clip program are available on the ASI website, www.sheepusa.org/Wool_Information, for producers to access and print.