Ethical Superfine Merino from the Tasmanian Midlands
Please give us your elevator pitch:
White Gum Wool is grown by healthy, happy sheep on a single farm in the Tasmanian midlands. Biodiversity on the farm is treasured, and enhanced by keeping the number of sheep low. Sheep have access to a varied diet, which ensures their health. They live in a single flock, with all their friends and relations, wag their undocked tails behind them, and live out their natural lifetimes on the farm. Their beautifully soft, superfine merino wool is made into hand-knitting yarn and hand-crafted socks, in a range of colours inspired by the landscape. Several talented indie dyers also use our yarn as a base for their beautiful creations. Patterns for our yarn come from a collection of independent designers, and are free with yarn purchase.
Nan Bray, an American oceanographer who walked away from a job with the CSIRO as Australia’s leading marine scientist to produce one of the world’s most elite fibres, superfine Merino wool in the Tasmanian Midlands.
Liz Harfull. Author: Women of the land
What problem is your business solving:
Woolgrowing in Australia is a commodity-driven industry. As farmers are unable to tap into the margins of consumer products, they struggle with economic viability. In turn, the push to run more sheep means the natural capital of the property is diminished, and there is not much financial flexibility to improve animal welfare outcomes. White Gum Wool is proving the viability of a different approach: moving up the supply chain to capture the margins allows us to farm the way we want to (and many farmers would like to): empathy for our sheep is translated into the best possible nutrition, health care, and lifelong quality of life. By running fewer sheep, we are ensuring great nutrition, and also allowing the farm ecosystem to flourish. Our healthy ecosystems do a better job of sequestering carbon, don’t require synthetic chemicals like fertilisers or herbicides, and provide extensive habitat for all sorts of wildlife.
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