Wool payments to producers bounce back

British Wool is set to pay out £8.4m to its members for the 2021 clip, with the average price rising to 36.4p/kg for the fleeces.

The average increase of 135 per cent on the previous year’s crop was put down to improved auction prices for wool over the last 12 months alongside the marketing board’s push to reduce operational costs.

“With the challenges the industry is facing we are really pleased that this year’s payments are an improvement,” said the organisation’s chief executive Andrew Hogley,

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He admitted that although the price was not yet where he would like it to be, it represented a huge recovery since the difficulties of 2020 – a year when many producers dumped their wool rather incur the costs of handling and transporting it.

“We continue to work hard to improve returns further for our members,” added Hogley.

He said he was optimistic that the strong demand seen over recent months would be sustained, that the recovery in the wool market would continue through 2022, and that this would result in further price improvement for the 2022 wool clip.

Returns for the 2021 clip were likely to be around 40p per kg for many core grades, around 30p per kg for Blackface wool and around 15p per kg for Welsh and Swaledale.

Some speciality types such as Herdwick and Bluefaced Leicester will receive significantly higher returns. Herdwick wool will return 80p per kg and Bluefaced Leicester will return £5.50 per kg. An additional £1 per kg is also being paid out on most types of organic certified wool.

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