hey say that Australia prospered from sheeps' backs and no truer words have been uttered.Since John and Elizabeth Macarthurs brought the Merino sheep to Australia in the 1790s the wool industry has grown to be Australia's biggest rural export with over $4 billion worth per year sent overseas and adding valuable export dollars to the economy. However, production is falling with sheep numbers dropping from 174 million to 115 million.
The Australian wool industry is up against most factors which determine supply and demand - drought, overseas climate, fashion, the economy here and overseas, exchange rates, you name it! How the industry became so big is testimony to the toughness of the early Australian shepherds and a 'never say die' outlook on life.
The Woolmark Company is the marketing and trade arm of Australia's wool industry. It was founded in 1937 as a non profit making organisation and has offices throughout the world's wool markets. Woolmark is chaired by Alec Morrison and the MD is Adrian Kloeden.
In 1960 futures trading began in Australia with the establishment of a Sydney Exchange dealing in greasy wool.
The well known trademark seen below was launched in 1964 and is used to focus on the promotion of the wool industry.
When passing through Goulburn in NSW have a look at the Big Merino.