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Web Exclusive | March 2017

Wool demand continues to grow in EU, US

The demand for wool is continuing to grow in major international markets for imported clothing like the EU and the US. The demand is forecast to grow more strongly in China—the world's largest producer and exporter of woollen clothing and textiles. Increasing domestic consumption of luxury woollen textiles is also a factor pushing wool demand in China.

The continuing growth in wool demand has led to increase in the price of wool in Australian dollars since 2014, Senior ABARES economist Dr Caroline Gunning-Trant said in her analysis presented at ABARES Outlook 2017. Australia's leading forum for public and private decision-makers in agriculture, Outlook marks its 47th annual conference this year with expert analysis of innovation in agriculture.

“In the two years since early January 2015, prices have risen by about 35 per cent,” Gunning-Trant said. “The Australian Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) wool price is forecast to rise by 8 per cent in 2016–17 to around 1,360 c/kg.”

The upward trend in prices reflects the constrained supply of apparel wool—given lower flock numbers—and firm demand, particularly for fine wool.
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