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IWTO Wool Round Table

7. December 2017 @ 15:11 - 8. December 2017 @ 20:00

IWTO Wool Round Table will take place from December 7-8, 2017 in Port Elizabeth, Republic of South Africa

How can the industry protect wool’s environmental credentials? From on-farm practices to consumer empowerment programmes, the International Wool Textile Organisation looks at how wool can supply solutions to retail’s responsibility needs.

Sustainability isn’t just the latest buzzword in the wool industry. Care of sheep and the land they live on goes part and parcel with best practice in wool production.

Throughout the cycle of lambing, shearing, and protecting from pests and predators, wool growers will do what is necessary to care for their flocks, preserve their precious land resource and bring about a healthy yield of beautiful new wool each year.

Yet, getting this simple message to consumers in this increasingly urbanised world can be difficult. The need for wool education is becoming increasingly important.

Each year, the International Wool Textile Organisation invites its members to examine key issues and explore solutions within the intimate setting of the Wool Round Table. Taking place this year in Port Elizabeth, the hub of South Africa’s wool industry, experts will shed light on current media reports about textile sustainability, wool’s role in protecting its environmental credentials and how the industry can manage its resources to the benefit of the entire wool pipeline.

Traceability at the forefront

“The origin of textiles and impact of these fibres on our environment have been in the forefront of news and media articles since May,” says IWTO Secretary General Dalena White.

“Textile brand managers have emphasized the importance of wool’s traceability numerous times, and the wool industry has been proactive in ensuring complete transparency in the growing of wool. Numerous certificates of origin are available to buyers, complete with full detail of how the wool was grown and harvested.

“At the Wool Round Table, we will hear from experts in the field of sustainability about why these are now more important than ever and how we should gear our industry to supply the answers to environmentally aware consumers.”

Wool Round Table Speakers   

Wool Round Table speakers include Louis de Beer, Cape Wools SA; Mark Grave, Australian Wool Exchange; Dr Beverley Henry, Queensland University of Technology; Angus Ireland, Australian Wool Innovation; Chris Kerston, Savory Foundation; Geoff Kingwill, Cape Wools SA; Cobus Oosthuizen, LifeXchange; and Rolf Pretorius, Olive Leaf Foundation. IWTO President Peter Ackroyd and Anthony Kirsten of The Stucken Group will open the event.

Speaker Cobus Oosthuizen: “Trusting Wool with My Life!”

In 2015 LifeXchange founder Cobus Oosthuizen ran his second extreme marathon in the Kalahari desert – that’s 250 km of self-sufficient desert foot race – and he ran it in wool. After working with the National Wool Growers Association and meeting hundreds of farmers who were passionate about South African agriculture and its people, Cobus “had to be part of this incredible industry,” he wrote on his blog.  Cobus brings his passion to the Wool Round Table in a not-to-be-missed session on Friday December 8.

IWTO is pleased to welcome Woolworths’ Head of Sustainability Feroz Koor to the Wool Round Table on Thursday December 7 to talk about the company’s commitment to care for the environment, people, and communities. Woolworths SA launched its Good Business Journey initiative in 2007, aiming to reduce environmental impact and increase social and economic impact across its value chain.A decade later, Woolworths has been identified as a global leader in sustainable water management and has been awarded a position on this year’s Water A-List by CDP, the non-profit global environmental disclosure platform.


Visits to BKB’s wool store and a Merino sheep farm round out the programme. For full details visit www.iwto.org/events/2017-wool-round-table

Fine Wool Merino Breeders Welcome IWTO and Guests for Farm Visit

IWTO is pleased to confirm that Wool Round Table participants will be hosted by a family of fourth generation wool growers at their Eastern Cape farm on Saturday 9 December.

The property is situated in an area well known for its lush savannah pastures and soft climate. Natural pastures support farm animals and game in a unique ecosystem.

The farm consists of a mixed operation with Merino sheep, Angora goats, Limousine and Brangus cattle as well as 22 species of game.

The farm tour includes a South African barbecue and quality local wines.

To experience this unique opportunity, make sure you select the Optional Sheep Farm Visit when you register for the event.

IWTO Members are cordially invited to register here

Non-members, can contact IWTO for more information.

With a worldwide membership encompassing the wool pipeline from farm to retail, the IWTO represents the interests of the wool textile trade at a global level. The recognized authority for standards in the industry, IWTO facilitates research, education and knowledge sharing in its mission to ensure a sustainable future for wool.



7. December 2017 @ 15:11
8. December 2017 @ 20:00
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