• Do Price Premiums for Wool Characteristics Vary for Different End Products, processing Routes and Fibre Diameter Categories?

    No Australian wool price hedonic studies have separated auction data into different end product-processing groups (PPR) on the basis of all fibre attributes that affect the suitability of wool sale lots for PPR. This study was conducted to assess: (1) whether including information about PPR groupings is more useful in understanding price than clustering by broad fibre diameter (FD) categories, and (2) if the ‘noise’ of macroeconomic effects on price can be reduced by using a clean price relative to the market indicator (RelPrice) formula or a log RelPrice formula compared with log price or clean price. Hedonic models using data derived from 369 918 Australian auction sale lots in 2010–2011 were estimated for these four dependent price variables. Linear FD models predicted less of price’s variance than quadratic or exponential models. Segmenting wool sale lots into 10 PPR before wool price analyses was found to increase the proportion of price variance explained and thus be worthwhile. The change in price with a change in FD, staple length and staple strength differs significantly between PPR. Calculating RelPrice or log RelPrice appears a better price parameter than clean price or log price. Comparing the RelPrice and clean price models, the mean absolute percentage errors were 6.3% and 16.2%, respectively. The differences in price sensitivity to FD, staple length and staple strength across PPR implies a complex set of price-setting mechanisms for wool as different users place different values on these wool properties. These price-setting mechanisms need to be incorporated in hedonic models for agricultural products that possess this characteristic. The wool price premiums can be used to estimate relative economic values when constructing sheep breeding selection indexes and can help determine the most profitable wool clip preparation strategies. more »
  • Research on the Strength and Friction Property of Alpaca After Protease Processing

    The alpaca fiber weight-loss was carried using the method of H_2O_2 oxidation pretreating combined with Wolsen acid protease processing. The strength and surface friction property was researched after weight-loss slenderizing, and the relationship between the processing condition of Wolsen acid protease and weight-loss, scale frictional coefficient, and frictional effect were analyzed. At last, the linear fit and regression equation between strength retention and weight-loss of alpaca were educed. more »
  • Don't Let Micron Madness Crimp Your Style

    Everyone who comes on the farm these days is concerned about two items - micron count and crimp. I, myself, have written much about the virtues of skinny fleece and bold crimp, so I began to ponder whether this narrow focus was all that healthy for our industry. more »
  • Wool and Alpaca Fibre Blends

    Alpaca fibre has low crimp and smooth fibre surface. This makes the fibre difficult to process, particularly in sliver/fibre transferring and delivering processes. Blending with wool enhances the alpaca fibre processibility, makes the fibre more easily processed on modern wool processing facilities, and allows the development of new products. To evaluate the effect of wool fibre properties, especially wool crimp, on alpaca/wool blends, two alpaca fibre lots were processed to tops then blended with three commercial wool tops via top gillings. Yarns and knitted fabrics were subsequently engineered with identical machine settings. The performance of alpaca/wool blend slivers, yarns and fabrics has been investigated in this paper. more »