Wool win a ‘privilege’ for growers
Denmark superfine woolgrowers Bryce and Sonia Edwards were named the inaugural winners of the WA Premium Lot (wool) of the Week competition.
Making a special appearance at the Rabobank WA Sheep Expo & Sale event in Katanning last week, where a sample of their wool was displayed, the Edwards family were over the moon with the announcement.
“We were gobsmacked to take out the prestigious win,” Mr Edwards said. “It was a privilege.”
Competition co-ordinator Jeremy King said the Edwards’ Windy Grazing November-shorn woolclip lot, from sale F35, was the overall winning lot from 35 entries throughout the 2017-18 season.
“It was the finest of all the weekly winning lots throughout the year, all judged by PJ Morris Wools’ buyer Darren Calder and Techwool Trading buyer Russell Fraser, who volunteered their time,” he said.
The Edwards’ AWTA test results for their four bales of 15.7 micron wool for sale F35 recorded a 16.9 coefficient of variation of diameter, a vegetable matter of 0.4 per cent and a 99.8 per cent comfort factor.
The Edwards run 1000 Misty Hills blood superfine Merino ewes on their 180ha property and are aiming to double the flock with further investment in leased land.
“After becoming woolgrowers seven years ago and buying our
property in 2013, we now have the confidence to reduce our vineyard management work and run more sheep,” Mr Edwards said.
“It won’t be without challenges but the last three years we have produced a more consistent and even line of wool.”
Mr Edwards said his wife was also enjoying the wool business, saying she had become good at
selecting rams with the goal of going finer.
“We were blown away with our last wool check, selling to a top of 3221¢/kg clean,” he said.
Misty Hills stud co-principal Heather Meaton said the Edwards family were enthusiastic superfine woolgrowers and had the right attitude to run a profitable flock.
“We were pleased that three of
our ram-buying clients had wool samples on display at the expo,” she said. Addressing the expo crowd, Mr Calder said wool had pushed to the front with excellent farm gate returns.
“During the year, we judged the lots not by just the individual fleeces, but looking at the entire clip and how it was prepared and classed into separate lots,” he said.
“The weekly winners represented a wide range of micron, yields, and staple lengths.”
Mr Calder said they could have chosen winners from any one of 10 lots per sale, so good was the season.
Mr King said the wool display samples would be sold, with proceeds going to the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
Denmark woolgrowers Bryce and Sonia Edwards and their children Lucia and Ethan celebrate their win in the inaugural WA Premium Lot of the Week competition with Elders WA wool manager Danny Burkett,back left, judge Darren Calder, and competition co-ordinator Jeremy King.