A bail of Uruguayan fine, clean wool, 14.4 microns, was sold at a record price of 37.76 a kilo. The ultra fine wool, (uncommon for Uruguay that has a flock mostly of Corriedale), was achieved based on a strategic alliance between the Merino breeders, the country’s Agriculture Research Institute, the textile industry and 51 farmers that signed in for the project.
The objective of the project set up several years ago is to produce ultra-fine wool (below 15.6 microns) in open range, extensively and in soils where sheep farming has become a more profitable option than other agriculture activities.
The Uruguayan Wool Secretariat which analyzed the bail determined that the wool has the following conditions: 20.1% diameter variation coefficient; 99.8% comfort factor; 79.3% clean yield performance; 68.2% luminosity (Y) and minus 1.1% yellowish grading (Y-Z).
The record Merino bail was sold to a local textile plant, Lanas Trinidad S.A. with the final price of 37.76 US dollars per kilo, or equivalent to 28.92 USD per kilo greasy wool.
The bail was made up with fleece from several different farms belonging to the project. This is the second year running that a wool bail has managed the 14.4 microns.
Most of Uruguay’s flock is dual purpose Corriedale with coarse wool (above 26 microns), for years the breed that best adapted to Uruguayan soil and international conditions. Fine wool breeds such as Merino and Ideal make a smaller percentage of the flock mainly because Uruguay’s soil can be too humid for the Merino.