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'Out of Vietnam' project to generate Merino wool demand
Mar '13
The Woolmark Company anticipates its Out of Vietnam project will generate growth in the Vietnam wool processing industry, resulting in increased demand for Australian Merino wool.

The Out of Vietnam project is working towards developing a sustainable supply chain in Vietnam and expands the country’s current manufacturing market.

The Woolmark Company has received an overwhelming response to the project since its launch in Hanoi in June 2012, and has since launched the project’s second phase in Ho Chi Minh City in November 2012.

“The response to Out of Vietnam has been tremendous and all agreed partners have shown the utmost confidence in the project,” The Woolmark Company General Manager for Product

Development and Commercialisation, Jimmy Jackson, said.

“We have already expanded from the initial flat-bed knitting sector and have introduced circular knits, socks and accessories to the project. We are also in the process of setting up a supply chain with the weaving sector to make men’s suits and separates.”

A trade mission was organised in September 2012 to assist in the establishment of a new supply chain. Leading Vietnamese knitters went to SpinExpo in China and were introduced to manufactures. Nine leading spinning companies from Italy, Germany, China, Thailand and India participated in a Spinners Meeting in Hanoi in December and one-on-one meetings were organised with 16 companies from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

Ten new industry partners from the Ho Chi Minh area, including leading weaving companies, have agreed to participate in product development trials from March 2013.

“The Woolmark Company has concentrated on transferring the know-how to Vietnamese manufacturers,” Mr Jackson said. “We have sent industry technical specialists to Vietnam to teach the dyeing, knitting and finishing processes.

“Some companies have already started with commercial orders and we are heading in the right direction to be able to promote Vietnam as a good, reliable source of quality basics made from Australian wool.”

Truong Thi Thanh Ha, CEO and chair of Doximex – one of Vietnam’s largest knitting manufactures – said Doximex was exhibiting its wool fabrics at the Pitti Bimbo trade show in Italy and ISPO in Germany.

“The training we received from The Woolmark Company technical staff was first class,” Mrs Ha said. “For example we had never dyed wool before, but now after the training we are very confidant to do it on our own. Also, as part of the Out of Vietnam project we are very proud that our fabrics made from Australian wool will be exhibited at two major European trade shows over the next few weeks, and potential customers will be impressed.”

Doan Thi Bich Ngoc, CEO of apparel manufacturer and retailer Canifa, echoed this sentiment and also said how confident Canifa had become in manufacturing wool.

“The Woolmark Company’s Out of Vietnam project, which introduced us to Australian wool for the first time, has been great,” Mrs Ngoc said.

“The Woolmark Company, who sent its technicians to our factory to teach our staff how to knit and finish both socks and sweaters made from Australian wool yarns, has given us the confidence to purchase wool yarns and to make our own collections to sell through our own retail shops in the future.”


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