Authenticity and sustainability are central values for the team at Wool Products Australia. With specifically sourced Australian-grown wool, local manufacturing processes, and a traceability initiative that shows customers the very farm that their woollen products come from – the business is passionate about quality at every step.
Wool Products Australia has been on a journey to share great Australian products with the world since its inception. When founder Graeme Kerr became aware of a stockpile of wool in a nearby warehouse in Sydney in 1996, he saw it as a chance to start his own business and become a major exporter of authentic Aussie goods. “I had no experience with wool before, but it seemed like an opportunity not to miss, especially as I’d always had an interest in Australian agriculture and manufacturing,” Graeme said.
After a few years of sourcing, sewing and packing wool in multiple locations, Graeme and his business partner Amy invested in their own factory in 1998, bringing all the manufacturing processes under one roof. Today the factory in Ingleburn, New South Wales manufactures Australian Made woollen bedding products and exports them all around the globe, championing its sustainable practices and authentic Aussie roots.
Wool Products Australia’s flagship range is the Woolstar Eco Range of bedding products. Made in Ingleburn from Tasmanian-sourced wool, a cleaner wool that requires less processing than other materials, the range is free from harsh chemicals and manufactured in accordance with the best environmental processes. The use of locally-sourced materials was a conscious decision Graeme and Amy made in an effort to reduce their carbon footprint.
On top of practising ethical and environmentally-friendly manufacturing processes, the company wanted another way to communicate the integrity of its products’ lifecycles with the public. “Wool is inherently more sustainable than other fibres - it returns to the earth in six months. But there’s more to do, such as other elements of the product, packaging, recycling and transport,” Graeme said. “In 2015 we launched the Farm2Shelf traceability initiative, which enables consumers to trace the wool used in the quilts, toppers and pillows right back to the farm where the wool is grown. We wanted to show that our products are real.”
The Farm2Shelf initiative has been viewed positively not only by customers but also by the farmers that provide Wool Products Australia with its raw material. “If a farmer knows what their wools I being used for, they’re super excited too and want to know more,” Graeme said. “It becomes more than just growing wool. They’re part of the story.”
Exporting to Korea, Japan, China and even Russia and Europe, Graeme has seen how products manufactured in Australia are a point of difference in overseas markets. “In particular, Asian markets love Australian Made products – they see our products are made to a high-quality standard,” he said. “So many competitors out there seem like they’re Aussie produced and made, but they’re actually made overseas. The green and gold Australian Made logo shows that we’re authentic, and actually make our products here. It definitely helps us to build trust in our export markets.”
“Having the Australian Made logo on our products really gives us the credibility of being a high-quality product, and shows that its been manufactured in Australia to the highest standard. And domestically, it’s so important to support Australian Made products. It means you’re supporting our economy, generating more jobs, and supporting local industries.”
The team at Wool Products Australia is a passionate, highly skilled and experienced workforce, with many employees having worked there for over 20 years. Working alongside his daughter Melissa, Graeme is proud to say the business is a tight-knit team, supporting each other and the local industries they partner with.
“We believe that our passion for the wool fibre, the products we develop and the relationships we build with our Australian farmers show with our high-quality products.”
Learn more about Wool Products Australia at www.woolproducts.com.au