Expo and sale to highlight WA’s soaring sheep industry

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Shannon SmithAlbany Advertiser
Rabobank WA Sheep Expo and Ram Sale.
Camera IconRabobank WA Sheep Expo and Ram Sale. Credit: GSMSA

The future of the merino sheep and wool industry is bright and the Rabobank WA Sheep Expo and Ram Sale this month is doing its part to keep it that way.

The Katanning expo has a proud history of more than 100 years, and more than 500 stud rams and ewes will be on display this year.

With prices for sheepmeat and wool soaring, the showcase will highlight opportunities for producers at a perfect time.

Great Southern Merino Sheepbreeders’ Association secretary Karlene Goss said the group’s main objectives were to encourage the breeding of pure-bred merino sheep. “We also want to foster a spirit of competition between and among breeders, provide opportunity for the promotion of pure-bred merino sheep, facilitate the sale of pure-bred merinos and advocate on behalf of and protect the interests of pure-bred merino sheep breeders,” she said.

“Wool fibre is now more important than ever with (the) world increasing the demand for sustainable, environmentally friendly and organic materials — this describes wool perfectly.”

Merino stud breeder and GSMSA committee member Jeremy King said merino wool had been in his family for three generations.

“Self-replacing merino flocks still remain the most profitable out there,” he said.

“With wool and sheepmeat prices remaining at record highs, the merino industry is going through some golden years and future outlook remains very strong.”

The expo will feature AWTA Premium Lot of the Week, where more than 40 woolgrowers selling their wool have been selected by wool brokers throughout the year to then be judged best on the day.

The day includes a Landmark Junior Ram, Elanco Pro Ram and Pro Ewe, Elders Expo 4, Bayer Production Class competitions, and the presentation of the coveted Rabobank Supreme Trophy.

Putting the future in the hands of the next generation, students from local agriculture colleges will participate in the AWI State Ag School Challenge, showcasing shearing, wool classing and sheep judging.

Ms Goss said the expo was keeping up with modern technology, and Auctions Plus would provide an online auction service.

The expo is at the Ram Pavilion and Royal Agricultural Society Shearing Shed at the Katanning Leisure Centre on August 22 and 23.

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