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Thursday, February 09, 2006

Wool Industry Needs Market Share, Improved Profitability

Primary Industries Minister Steve Kons says the State Government is determined to build on the value of Tasmania’s wool clip.


He said this week’s Tasmanian wool sale confirmed the world-wide reputation for the quality of the fleeces on offer.


“The Government is keen to support growth and international export opportunities with the aim of increasing the $70 million annual farm gate value of the industry.


“The adoption of ongoing technological improvements and techniques by all in the industry will be critical for the industry’s survival.”


Mr Kons said efforts were being made through DPIWE and the Tasmanian Institute of Agricultural Research working in partnership with Australian Wool Innovations Ltd and the Tasmanian wool industry over the past three years through the 8x5 Wool Profit Program.


“The 8x5 Wool Profit Program has set a goal of a profitable industry returning 8% on assets managed for wool production, to be achieved over a five-year period and has successfully concluded its first three years with strong approval from wool growers.”


Mr Kons said DPIWE and TIAR have agreed to continue the program for another three years and are negotiating with AWI regarding their level of support for ongoing projects.

He said it was proposed that the 8 x 5 program be expanded to be more inclusive of other farming operations including sheep meats, feed management and supply trials.


“In early April, DPIWE in conjunction with TFGA wool council, TAFE Tasmania and AWI will hold a workshop for shearers and producers.

“One of the latest developments in shearing practices, the upright shearing platform, will be on display.


“This is one of several prototypes soon to be available commercially.


“These types of technical improvements are designed to ensure occupational health and safety issues are pro-actively managed into the future.


“Other training initiatives the DPIWE has supported include the successful Working in Wool Program now entering its third year.


“The program showcases career opportunities in the wool industry to year 11 and 12 students.”







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