ASI Offers Online Wool Mill Directory

American Sheep Industry Association

Looking for a small wool mill near you? The American Sheep Industry Association has recently completed an update of the Small and Midsize Mills Directory on its website.

The directory provides information for anyone looking for processing services from scouring to weaving to dying and even for processing wool into fertilizer pellets.

Services and products included in the directory include:

  • Scouring
  • Carding
  • Pindrafting/Gilling
  • Combing
  • Yarn Spinning
  • Dyeing
  • Knitting
  • Weaving
  • Felting
  • Fertilizer Pelletizing

“We hope that both producers and fiber enthusiasts will find the directory to be a valuable resource as they look for opportunities to sell or buy wool in the future,” said ASI Wool Marketing Director Rita Samuelson. “These small and midsize mills play a vital role in the American sheep industry while working on a mostly local and regional level.”

Click Here if you’re a mill owner or operator and you’d like to have your operation added to the list.

Sheep Show Judges Wool Breeds Workshop

Tim Barnes, OSU Extension Educator ANR, Marion County

2023 Sheep Show Judges Wool Breeds Workshop

The Wool Judge Workshop III will be held Saturday, April 8, 2023 from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm at the Wayne County Fairgrounds located in Wooster, Ohio (199 Vanover St, Wooster, OH 44691).

This educational workshop is designed to aid sheep show judges to evaluate fleece quality in the breeds of sheep that value fleece quality n their breed scorecard.

The following topics will be presented at the workshop:

  • The wool fiber: Understanding wool and its unique characteristics
  • The show ring: Terminology, procedures, and evaluation criteria
  • Hands on fleece judging: Fine wool, colored wool, and medium wool
  • Hands on evaluation of yearling ewe classes: Long and fine wools

Although there is no fee associated for attending this event, it is requested that registration to hold your seat be completed by Monday, April 3, 2023 by emailing Tim Barnes Tim Barnes, OSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator, Marion County at or by calling at (740) 914-3030. Lunch will be available onsite for purchase.

We look forward to seeing you at this years event!

4 Reasons to Introduce Wool into your Garden

American Wool
(Previously published online: American Wool: May 12, 2021)

If you’re looking to reap the full benefits of your garden, then you’re tending to your plot, planting your crop, or planning for next year’s bloom, gardening is truly a year-round activity. Whether you have a garden in a window planter, a small terrace, raised beds, or even in a large portion of your yard — you can benefit from using wool to help your plants thrive.

The pandemic has driven many cultural and behavioral shifts; primarily, that families are spending more time at their homes and have started new hobbies or picked up old ones. USA today found that gardening as a hobby is booming! So, we talked with Albert Wilde, owner of Wild Valley Farms, and 6th generation sheep rancher in Croydon, Utah about how wool comes into play in the flourishing field of gardening.

“Typically, when you shear a sheep you have what’s called ‘waste wool’” Wilde starts off, “this is wool that’s from the belly or hindside of the sheep and it’s often discolored, thin, and generally not considered valuable.” With waste wool making up to 20% of 

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Preparing for Shearing

As summer comes to a close, the fall is full of management tasks in all areas of livestock production that need to be accomplished prior to the new year. For the small ruminant industry, shearing is one of those important tasks. In this episode of Forage Focus, OSU faculty and staff emphasize the importance of pasture management when preparing for the shearing of fleeced livestock. The presence of pasture weeds and time spent grazing prior to shearing can negatively impact the value and quality of your wool clip. For more tips on how to appropriately preparing for shearing day, be sure to take a listen to this short clip. We would also like to thank the Dave Cable Farm and 2021 Statewide Sheep Shearing School participants for their help in creating this film. For those interested in participating in any of our up-coming sheep shearing courses, please watch this page for event announcements.

Nuts and Bolts of Wool

Sponsored by the American Sheep Industry Association, Dr. Lisa Surber of LM Livestock Services discusses several topics in the wool industry including potential contaminates, how to market wool, as well as some trends in wool end uses. For those that still have wool on hand from spring shearing, this presentation will certainly be worth the listen.

American Wool Assurance Program

American Sheep Industry
(American Wool Assurance (AWA) homepage)

The American Wool Assurance website launched today at, allowing American sheep producers to take a crucial step in certifying their wool through this voluntary, American industry-driven certification process.

The American Sheep Industry Association worked with Colorado State University the past two years to develop the voluntary program and standards that will allow manufacturers to purchase American wool with confidence that the animals producing that wool have been raised with a high level of care. Industry input from producers, shearers, buyers, extension, animal welfare experts and processors was critical in development of program standards.

“This is something that consumers and brands are asking for increasingly, and so it has become Continue reading

The Use of Wool in Compost and other Alternative Applications

Dr. Cate Williams, Institute of Biological, Environmental & Rural Sciences (IBERS), Aberystwyth University
(Previously published by Business July 23, 2020)

(Image Source: Wind Valley Farms)

How many of you still have wool on hand from last years wool clip? Have you decided when, where, and how you will sell it if at all? For those that are unsure, perhaps you could consider implementing a few of these alternative applications that would greatly benefit your operation this year and for many more to come.

  • Sheep’s wool offers many benefits when used in a mixture as compost or mulch: as a source of slow-release nitrogen and other trace elements, in weed and pest control, moisture retention and temperature regulation.
  • Wool may be used as a sustainable, renewable, and environmentally friendly alternative to peat.
  • Other alternative uses include in thermal and noise insulation, particularly in the construction of new “eco-houses”.
  • Further research is needed to establish optimum composting strategies and mixtures as well as how to upscale the process.

As the market for wool declines, producers may be looking for alternative ways to make use of their fleeces, particularly

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