AWI to hold live wool bioharvesting demonstrations

Sheep Central, July 21, 2023

A uniform fleece coat left underneath the weakened staple zone on a sheep treated for chemical defleecing. Image – Phil Hynd.

LIVE sheep demonstrations of biological wool harvesting will be held in New South Wales and Western Australia in September and October.

The first free public demonstration of the Australian Wool Innovation-funded University of Adelaide project will be held at the Falkiner Memorial Field Station at Conargo on 1 September.

AWI is funding research into biological defleecing using a natural protein found in corn that generates a weakened zone at the base of the wool fibre, but enables the fleece to stay on the sheep without a net until the wool can be removed. The research is led by University of Adelaide professor Phil Hynd.

AWI said the demonstration day will also provide an opportunity to see commercially available options for mobile, upright and adaptable wool harvesting alternatives.

AWI is also planning a bioharvesting demonstration day in Western Australia in October, with a date and venue to be finalised. Western Australia was chosen as the second site due to the state’s shearing challenges and the dificulty for WA growers to travel to an eastern states day. AWI is also running a bioharvesting trial in Western Australia.

Due to cost constraints, demonstration days in other Australian states have not been planned; however, AWI will be sharing a video demonstrating the bioharvesting process in the near future.

Participants at the demonstration days will also be able to talk to leading machinery and shed manufacturers on design and construction, and get the latest AWI information on shearing shed safety, shed design and shearer and wool handler training initiatives.

The Falkiner Memorial Field Station is located on Conargo Road, Conargo, New South Wales, 14km south of Conargo and 22km north of Deniliquin.

Related Sheep Central stories on wool bioharvesting include:


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