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Wool campaign to boost Kidderminster carpet firms
KIDDERMINSTER carpet manufacturers and retailers are gearing up to ride on the back of a campaign for wool.
As part of Wool Week, which runs from next Monday until Sunday, Brintons and Victoria are among the firms who, along with the nationwide campaign, aim to reignite the UK’s love affair with wool.
The UK carpet industry is the biggest user of wool, with 75 per cent of all British wool going into carpet and Kidderminster-based Brintons uses the wool of one in every seven British sheep.
Don Coates, managing director at Brintons, said: “Wool has been used for centuries in carpet manufacturing and is universally recognised as the premier fibre for use in carpet.
“It has very good wear properties, is easy to clean and maintain and is an environmentally, highly sustainable fibre – 90 per cent of homes have carpet in them and coarser fleeces of British sheep make great carpet.
“This gives us a great opportunity to support the national campgin and provides us with a point of differentiation at the point of sale.”
John Thorley, campaign chairman, said the British “love affair” with wool had been “on the wane”.
He added: “Ten years ago, there were 21 million breeding ewes. Today that is down to 14 million.
“Up until recently, for a farmer around Kidderminster, wool was a cost to the business. About 80 per cent of the shepherding costs were associated with wool and yet only three per cent of income was derived from the actual wool.
“Say you had 1,000 Romney ewes, farmers were getting about £2,000 for their investment, which barely paid for the shearing.
“Today they are getting between £6,000 to £7,000 which makes it far more economically viable.
“We must not turn our back on Britain’s home grown fibre.
It is both an ancient fibre and a fibre of the future.”