Sheep wool lying unused in shed as study sets out to find new uses for product

There are thousands of tons of sheep wool lying across the county and country, according to Cler Dan McCarthy, who this week welcomed the announcement that a new study would be conducted to find a market for the produce.

The Kenmare councilor said that this product was being wasted and due to lack of use of wool soon farmers would no longer be able to cut sheep as it cost them money.

“It has gone to such a level that the price of wool is so low that farmers will not be able to pay for the shearing of the sheep.”

“There is bound to be some use for this produce,” he said.

He said wool was widely used in the past and given that it is a product produced by farmers across the country, a new market is important.

Minister Pippa Hackett announced Tuesday that a consortium with experts from Münster Technological University will review the demand for sheep wool to help sheep farmers.

The Agile Executive, an experienced consortium comprising experts from MTU and Donegal Yarns, was appointed to review the potential demand for wool based products in domestic and international markets. The appointment was made following a competitive public procurement process that involved seeking experienced service providers to review potential market opportunities for wool based products nationally and internationally and prepare a report of their findings.

Minister Hackett said the report would aid in the future of the Irish wool industry.

“As a sheep farmer myself, I am only aware of the challenges and issues faced by the wool sector. That’s why I’m pleased to announce the appointment of The Agile Executive to conduct this review, which I expect to complete in the first quarter of 2022. I believe the report will, when ready, help me develop a roadmap for the Irish wool industry. and will help shape the future policy on wool as envisaged by me in the Government’s program.”

Cleo Murphy of the Green Party said wool has many potential uses.

“Given that wool is a sustainable, renewable, organic, low-carbon material, it is worth exploring and developing a market for it. We are used to thinking of it as a material for textiles, but it also includes insulation, packaging and packaging. And even fertilizers have potential. If we can bring more money into the pockets of sheep farmers, it is a welcome initiative by Minister Hackett.

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