OPPORTUNITIES for domestic and diversified wool processing in Australia will be explored with the appointment of consultants to undertake a feasibility study.
Peak grower body WoolProducers Australia said Deloitte Access Economics has been engaged to assist with the wide-ranging feasibility study.
WPA said Deloitte brings a highly experienced team of economists and trade analysts to the project, supported by their strong global network and complemented by a team of industry subject matter experts.
WoolProducers chief executive officer Jo Hall said after an extremely competitive tender process WPA is pleased to engage Deloitte to undertake this work “to guide the future of our industry and provide additional benefits to the wider Australian economy.”
“The time is right for us to look at such opportunities, changing trade patterns, the risk of emergency animal diseases, Australia’s desire to increase its domestic manufacturing capacity, and supply chain expectations on sustainability and transparency are key considerations that will guide the work of the feasibility study,” she said.
The work of the project will be guided by a steering committee comprising of: Australian Wool Innovation, National Council of Wool Selling Brokers of Australia, Australian Council of Wool Exporters & Processors Inc, Australian Wool Testing Authority, Australian Wool Exchange and Austrade.
Ms Hall said the steering committee, and its diverse composition is a core element of the project, providing direct industry linkages and expertise for the Deloitte team, ensuring that the final report will be of value to the entire industry.
Industry consultations will take place over the course of the project, with a final report due to be delivered to the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment in September 2022.
“WoolProducers look forward to delivery of the final report to determine what steps can be taken to value add, and limit risks associated with our wool exports.
“We would like to thank Minister Littleproud and the Australian Trade and Market Access Cooperation program of the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, for providing the funding for this important work,” Ms Hall said.
Detail on the elements of the feasibility study can be found here and any organisation wanting to provide feedback to the project should contact WoolProducers Australia here.
This topic has been well worked over. Some factors favour further processing of agricultural products close to the point of production and others close to the point of consumption. On balance, wool is in the latter category. This is in any case well understood by participants in the wool trade, who are capable of making their own decisions. Past attempts by government to encouraging wool processing in Australia have ended in tears.