Memberships

SustainaWOOL is a membership-based scheme, with membership, accreditation, and certification available to eligible wool growers, in any state or territory of Australia.

The following pages contain the information you need to become a SustainaWOOL member, service levels and associated subscriptions, and application forms.

The Philiosophy of SustainaWOOL

Our philosophy is that buyers and sellers of wool should be able to specify and celebrate high standards of sustainability, traceability and clip preparation

Mark Grave, AWEX CEO

Our Growers

Healthy sheep are at the centre of sustainable, profitable wool production – wherever it is grown.

The Philiosophy of SustainaWOOL<sup>TM</sup>

There are close to 1000 accredited SustainaWOOL growers around Australia, and more electing to declare their good stewardship practices every day.

For this reason, wool growers who uphold the highest possible standards take care of their animals and the environment, and take pride in the health of their farm and their livestock.

This means that sheep are kept in the best possible heath; that sheep have been given reasonable protection from the effects of disease, pests, predators and that appropriate corrective action is taken if sheep require treatment or relief from pain and suffering.

It also means that the farm environment and the facilities within are carefully maintained, and farm management practices are assessed and benchmarked, so they can be improved.

The SustainaWOOL Integrity Scheme allows professional wool producers the opportunity to declare to the world the actions that take place on their properties on a normal day-to-day basis – the actions which allow them to produce a quality product from their valued stock.

So, if you are not a member, ask yourself – why not?

Meet Our Members

Our growers are the backbone of SustainaWOOL. They are proud of their production standards and are passionate about meeting the needs of the consumer.

Meet some of our long-standing members, who embody the high sustainability standards that SustainaWOOL exists to celebrate

What Does Grower Membership Entail?

Sheep on the hillside

SustainaWOOL Certification involves:

  • Completion of the application form and practices checklist – this checklist enables applicants to show that reasonable care has been taken to avoid, remedy or mitigate any adverse effects on the environment or the sheep – this includes State and Commonwealth Government requirements such as completion of a Farm Chemical Users course by at least one person working on the farm, and maintenance of an inventory of all chemicals kept on farm, and compliance with safe handling and storage requirements;
  • Successful completion of a desk audit – all applications submitted are subject to this mandatory audit;
  • Acceptance of farm inspection and flock audit – 20% of farms are selected at random for inspection each year;
  • Provision of evidence of purchase and application of pain relief products for breech modification operations.
  • Confirmation of application of professional wool classing standards, via physical appraisal of all sale lots by an expert AWEX appraiser.

Membership Options

SustainaWOOL is designed to support growers to achieve best practice sustainability standards, and also to recognise that sustainability is a journey, and respect the uniqueness of each farm context.

For this reason, we offer growers access to 3 membership options to best suit the needs of their businesses.

SustainaWOOL GOLD Certification

Certified Gold is the exclusive top tier among the SWIS grower membership, and a differentiation opportunity for the grower businesses involved.

GOLD certification is for those growers who aspire to a higher standard of audit integrity, apply the highest standards of sheep welfare practice, and who can evidence regenerative practices.

To be eligible for GOLD certification, growers:

  • Must not modify the breeches of their lambs for flystrike prevention purposes using mulesing or any other method.
  • Provide pain relief for tail docking and castration procedures.
  • Successfully complete an annual farm audit.

Our GOLD growers receive a unique bale stencil, and a profile on the SustainaWOOL website.

SustainaWOOL GREEN Certification

SustainaWOOL GREEN certification is the tier for growers who do not mules or who have ceased to mules, and who elect to not have an annual farm inspection.

Our GREEN growers are treated as a group for farm auditing purposes, with 20% of GREEN grower farms selected at random for audit each year.

Certification for GREEN growers is subject to annual renewal, and pain relief should be used at lamb marking for tail docking and castration operations.

All GREEN growers receive the SustainaWOOL bale stencil.

SustainaWOOL BLUE Certification — Sustainablue

SustainaWOOL BLUE certification is the GREEN-equivalent tier for growers who have not been able to phase out the practice of surgical breech modification, but who otherwise meet the SustainaWOOL standard for quality and sustainability.

Pain relief must be used for breech modification procedures at lamb marking, and should be use for tail docking and castration operations.

All BLUE growers receive the SustainaWOOL bale stencil.

Membership Benefits

SustainaWOOL provides 3 types of benefit to our grower members.

  1. Reputation: for growers who take their stewardship and reputations responsibilities seriously, SustainaWOOL provides an effective platform to declare these good practices to the world’s wool buyers, and to make clear your willingness to be audited.
  2. Practice improvement: the SustainaWOOL Integrity Scheme allows growers to self-assess farm management practice against the SustainaWOOL stewardship benchmarks, allowing growers to identify areas for practice improvement.
  3. Financial Reward: SustainaWOOL-certified sale lots are eligible to be included in buyer consignments for integrity-assured lots – attracting additional competition on these lots, and often demonstrably higher buyer limits.

Since 2015, SustainaWOOL GREEN growers have typically received 2-3% higher wool prices for their fleece lots at auction than received for equivalent non-member lots, and experience a lower passed-in rate at auction.

A similar pattern exists for our BLUE growers, who typically receive 1-2% higher price at auction for their fleece lots compared to non-members, and a lower passed-in rate.

These financial benefits and our lowest-in-class fees mean that SustainaWOOL membership generates an excellent return on investment.

read more about member benefits

Membership Fees

AWEX operates as a not-for-profit wool industry services company, and recoups the costs associated with service provision through charging fees.

In keeping with AWEX’s not-for-profit ethos, the SustainaWOOL Integrity Scheme operates on a cost-recovery basis.

Membership packages are offered on a rolling 12-month basis, subject to annual re-application on the anniversary of application, and require payment of any associated fees in order to take part and to receive benefits, including ability to identify your wool to buyers using the SustainaWOOL Quality Scheme Code.

For Australian SustainaWOOL GREEN and BLUE wool growers, the 2020/21 membership has been set at $150 GST inclusive, and is payable at the time of first accreditation or subsequent renewal.

For SustainaWOOL GOLD growers, the 2021/22 membership fee has been set at $850 GST inclusive, and is payable at the time of initial application or subsequent renewal.

Payments can be made by cheque or money order, VISA or Mastercard, or by electronic fund transfer.

Grower Checklist

SustainaWOOL Integrity Scheme

For growers to apply for SustainaWOOL certification, the Grower Checklist must be completed by the responsible grower or farm manager. This is both a ‘self-assessment’ document, and also a legal declaration, subject to random desktop and/or on-farm audit.

The Checklist should be completed only after reading the SustainaWOOL Integrity Scheme Manual and Audit Checklist issued separately.

Growers who fulfil the requirements detailed in the Manual and Audit Checklist will receive SustainaWOOL Integrity Scheme certification.

Growers can use the manual edition of the form by clicking on the image at left or the online version by clicking the button below.

ONLINE VERSION

Grower Resources

farm chemical inventory
animal treatment record
animal mortality record