Industry News

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The wool industry unites against Over/Underweight balesThe Australian wool industry is campaigning to address an issue that impacts its efficiency and costeffectiveness well beyond the farm gate – Over/Underweight bales.

“This is an issue that can be addressed on farm, quickly.” said Mark Grave, AWEX, CEO. “The baleweight minimum and maximum standards have been set by industry to achieve optimum efficiencyin handling and processing.”

“It is easier to press a bale within the correct weight range on farm, rather than passing that responsibility down the supply chain.” said Mark Grave. “AWEX is working closely with SellingAgents/Warehouses to address this issue.”

In a new initiative AWEX is contacting wool classers to report the (overweight or underweight) receival weights of individual bales from clips they have recently classed. This feedback will make the classerimmediately aware that their performance directly impacts the next customer in the supply chain andcan add significant costs to the handling of wool. This feedback should be the catalyst to improve theperformance of their shearing teams.”

“When wool is received at the store, the Selling Agent/Warehouse doesn’t know if or how manyover/underweight bales might be in each load, each clip, or how many lines of wool will be effected.”

On receival, Over/Underweight bales are identified in each clip and the processing of the clip stops. Decisions then have to be made about how each bale and line will be handled before the processing of the clip can be proceed.

“Wool can miss the intended sale due to the additional time required to rehandle Over/Underweightbales and additional costs are being incurred for handling.” said Mark Grave

“The active cooperation AWEX has received from Selling Agents/Warehouses on this issue showsthe extent of the impact and level of concern this has in the industry. The estimated cost of handlingand then re-handling over/underweight bales is anywhere between $20.00-$30.00 per bale and thecost to the industry is conservatively estimated to be between $600,000 to $900,000 p.a.”

“To support this campaign, we urge growers and contractors to ensure that the wool classer and woolpresser have access to working, calibrated scales in the shearing shed. Bale weights are important.”

For further information contact:

Mark Grave, CEO,


p: 02 9428 6110

e: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.