Federated Farmers says harnessing outside experts and being market-driven are keys to reviving New Zealand’s strong-wool sector.
The Wool Industry Project Action Group says it believes we are on the cusp of a natural fibre renaissance, being led by more environmentally and socially-conscious consumers.
But a new approach is needed to turn things around.
Federated Farmers Wool Chairperson William Beetham says: “Making sure the process is customer-focused and open about what needs to change will be critical.
“The recommendation for creation of an Executive Officer role to drive action is sensible, William says.
Getting closer to the consumer
“The most important part of this role would be sector connection and coordination, bringing farmers closer to those who sell the end product.
“This will add significant value to wool through shortening the value chain and creating transparency through the supply chain.
“Achieving the right governance will be the prime factor if the sector is to avoid a repeat of earlier failed attempts to turn around the fortunes of strong wool.”ills and insights, with the ability to deliver strong governance,.” systems.
“Any board established shouldn’t be too large, should have diversity, should consider the growing Maori economy and be able to embrace the food and fibre sectors vision of Te Taiao (working with the natural world/our environment).
Young doing amazing things
“There are young people in our industry all over New Zealand who are doing amazing things with wool in fashion, home decor and related sectors, William says.
“These are the people who put our environment, cultural and social connections at the forefront of why they do what they do. To me, these are our leaders and this is the integrity in our brand that we need to be focusing on.
“Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor is right when he acknowledges there is no single idea or government policy to solve the wool sector’s problems.
Building wool returns through a market-driven process, back to where it comprises a large amount of New Zealand’s sheep and beef farmers’ income, would deliver jobs and prosperity for all New Zealanders”