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WAFarmers calls for whole of wool supply chain traceability
Aug '10
The Western Australian Farmers Federation (Inc.) (WAFarmers) Wool Section rejects the use of Australian Wool Exchange's (AWEX) National Wool Declaration forms for the declaration of status of mulesing, unless the rest of the wool supply chain takes responsibility for its traceability.

WAFarmers Wool Section President, Kim Henderson, noted that producers are told that consumers want to know whether the woollen garment that they are wearing has come from a sheep that has been mulesed or not, yet there is no system in place to carry this information to the shop front from the producer.

“There is no process in place, or support from the wool trade, for a transparent, traceability system that everyone supports,” said Mr Henderson.

“It makes little sense to have a program in place which verifies whether sheep have been mulesed or not, if there is no provision for this information to make it along the supply chain.

“Indeed, it is completely unfair for wool producers to be the only link in the chain to have to declare their mulesing status, and pay for the privilege to do so, while the rest of the supply chain shirks their responsibility.

Mr Henderson noted that while the WAFarmers Wool Section supported a quality assurance and traceability system, it was on the provision that everyone along the supply chain took the same responsibility and participated in a transparent manner.

“If it is the retailers demanding this information, then the process must start at the retail end and finish with the wool grower,” concluded Mr Henderson.

Mulesing is a preventative health procedure against fly strike in sheep which involves the swift surgical removal of thin strips of loose wool bearing skin from the breach and tail.

The Western Australian Farmers Federation (Inc)

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