Wool has been an integral part of different cultures for millennia. It is a renewable, sustainable, versatile, and bio-degradable product that links us all together.
There is no better way to support our local wool industry than by bringing together fibre-loving folk and connecting farmers with wool enthusiasts.
The big dream is to contribute to the Canadian wool industry revival and make it worthwhile for farmers to produce quality wool that is sought after.
The Wool Guild developed from conversations amongst people who are passionate about wool, its qualities, and its environmental and health benefits. Wool has historically played an important role in the every day life of Canadians for generations. It was one of the main sources for clothing and household textiles, starting with the import of the first sheep in 1664. The popularity of wool dropped dramatically in the mid 1920 with the introduction of the first synthetic fibres and our obsession with ‘softness’. Further decline occurred through the late 1960s when wool processing moved out of North America, leaving the industry in decline for decades. Even today most Canadian wool is destined for export. Once processed overseas, our wool comes back to us in the form of garments, carpets, textiles, and even insulation.
The majority of Canadian sheep farmers view wool almost as a bi-product of meat production, and often compost it or sell it cheaply for export. There is little to no incentive for them to be concerned about wool quality as it’s not an income generating factor. However over the past decade, together with the local and organic food movements plus efforts from large players like Campaign for Wool, we have started to become increasingly aware of the origin and quality of the products we buy. Our love-affair with synthetic fibres is slowly dwindling and we are enjoying natural wool products once again. Hand in hand with this, some shepherds are taking notice, improving their wool quality, and using Canadian mini mills for processing. Hooray for the local sustainability movement!
The vision for the The Wool Guild is to bring people together and initiate conversations and ideas. Whether you belong to one of the craft guilds, or are a producer, a fibre mill, a clothing designer, a researcher, or simply someone that loves natural wool products, we all have something to contribute. Global changes start with local movements. And it’s our belief that Canadian wool deserves better!
Here is how you can get involved:
KG of WOOL PRODUCED