25 Feb 2009

Farmers to hear details from WPI next month

1:36 pm on 25 February 2009

The Wool Partners International joint venture will take to the road late in March to advise some of the details to farmers.

WPI was formed as a partnership between PGG Wrightson and a farmer co-operative to lift returns for strong wool through an integrated farm to market supply system.

The company plans to issue a prospectus at some stage so wool growers can buy into the venture.

But there's been little detail available since its inception, which has annoyed farmers and provided ammunition for wool exporters and other critics of the venture.

Chief executive, Ian Abercrombie, says WPI has been concentrating on setting up its operation after buying the Wools of New Zealand marketing and technical service late last year.

He agrees that the lack of information has been a frustration for farmers but he expects that to be put right in a road show starting late next month.

Mr Abercrombie thinks there's room in the wool industry for both Wool Partners International and a competing marketing venture that Elders has announced in a deal with the world's largest carpet buyer.

He says any initiative that improves the price of wool and returns to farmers has to be commended.