Wool Production

Victorian ultrafine wool growers win with 10.2 micron bale

Sheep Central, February 23, 2024

At the awards ceremony were from left, NZ growers Yvonne and Barry Payne of Visuela Farm, Pier Luigi Loro Piana, Loro Piana CEO Damien Bertrand, and Robert, Pamela and Bradley Sandlant.


VICTORIAN ultrafine wool growers the Sandlant family at Pyrenees Park have won the prestigious Loro Piana Record Bale Award for the seventh consecutive time with a 10.2 micron entry.

The 24th and 25th editions of the award were presented in London on 1 February, with Robert, Pamela and Bradley Sandlant’s 10.2 micron bale surpassed their previous finest bale of 10.3 microns in 2013.

“It took 10 years to get 0.1 microns finer, so that’s how difficult it is,” Rod Sandlant said.

He said the 10.2 micron bale weighed 123 kilograms and tested with an average staple length of 76mm and tensile strength of 30 Newtons/kilotex.

The New Zealand 2023 Loro Piana Record Bale Award was presented to Barrie and Yvonne Payne of Visuela Farm.

The awards ceremony was hosted by Loro Piana chief executive officer Damien Bertrand, and Pier Luigi Loro Piana, deputy chairman of the Maison, a pioneer who has long championed the quest for the finest Merino wool.

The Italian specialty fibre textile company said its exceptional record bale wool garments have a special label that documents their traceability, from the year the animal was shorn to its origin, as well as the fiber’s micron. The Loro Piana Record Bale Award reflects the Maison’s commitment to sourcing the world’s finest wool and its unwavering dedication to exceptional quality, the quintessence of luxury.

Loro Piana said the first award was attributed in 1997, and breeders in Australia and New Zealand have since competed to achieve the best Merino wools.

The record bale prize is given every year to the farms that produce the two finest bales during the year. Of the four million bales selected each year, only a handful qualify for the final prize, Loro Piana said.


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