Australian wool prices recorded further strong gains last week with the Eastern Market Indicator rising another 18 cents to 893c/kg.
Word from the trade is that there are three factors at play - Australia's short supply, a lack of stocks in Chinese mills and, perhaps most significantly, South Africa's outbreak of Rift Valley fever. Although the outbreak came to the forefront a year ago, it is only now that the South African authorities have verified they are unable to assure what wool has come from unaffected flocks.
In late August, China placed a ban on all imports of South African greasy and processed wool. Prior to the ban, China was taking almost 60 percent of the South African clip.
Reprinted in part from weeklytimesnow.com