The wool market continues to struggle in 2021 due to the ongoing effects of the global Covid pandemic. Fine wools have made better recovery progress but marketing broader wool types can be a challenge, particularly for grades containing high vegetable matter and with low yields or poor colour. There is a surplus of unsold coarser wool types in every wool producing country in the world with a new clip coming to market. This is mainly due to the China / USA trade conflict in 2019 and then followed by Covid-19 which has had a dramatic impact on wool demand from March 2020 onwards. However, we are seeing some signs of improvement which is encouraging.
The entire global textile chain has been impacted for various reasons, some of which are as follows.
- Many mills have operated at significantly reduced capacity due to Covid and cancelled contracts. Most are still not back to fully normal operating conditions.
- It seems that clothing demand in a global pandemic is not a high priority. Many shops are still closed worldwide because they are not classified as an essential service.
- More people are working from home with a virtual office and significantly diminished or cancelled in person meetings, social events and other activities are all having an influence on demand for textiles at the present time. There is not an urgency by the consumer to buy new clothing.
There are high hopes that the worldwide vaccine roll out will be the ultimate goal in defeating Covid, ultimately restoring consumer confidence, returning to regular business conditions and our previous normal lifestyle. The wool trade in general supports this point of view and there is optimism that it is realistic this will be achievable at some point in time during 2021.
At CCWG we have continued our efforts to market Canadian wool when there is an opportunity to do so to our long established domestic and international wool buyers. We are still accepting wool at all of the company’s extensive national wool depot network and wool grading has continued uninterrupted as well. Although wool sales continue to be slow, wool payments to producers are now being processed.
Our sincere thanks to Canadian sheep producers for your business, cooperation and patience during this unusually difficult wool marketing period. Our best wishes to all for successful marketing in 2021.