Classers versed on their important role

27 May, 2018 04:00 AM

THEIR role in WA’s record-breaking wool industry and the importance of fulfilling it completely and correctly was impressed on 20 trainee wool classers on a visit to Perth wool handling facilities recently.

South Regional TAFE wool classing students and their lecturer Robert Carter visited the Western Wool Centre (WWC) in Bibra Lake on Wednesday to watch the live auction as price guides across the 18-22 micron spectrum and the Western Indicator all moved to record highs.

They also visited Australian Wool Handlers Pty Ltd wool stores and Australian Wool Testing Authority nearby, as well as the Elders show floor at the WWC where lot samples of wool are displayed for buyers to inspect before and after sales.

An annual event since 2007 as part of the wool classing course, the excursion was arranged by Mr Carter to impress on students the necessity of correct clip preparation, classing and documentation.

The itinerary was organised by Elders’ WA wool manager Danny Burkett and Elders’ wool technical officer Danny Royal.

Mr Burkett told students the ease with which wool moved from the woolshed through the supply “pipeline” to the end processor starts with them in the shed.

“You have control over the wool preparation, the classing, the lines to be made, the documentation and the suggested lotting advice,” Mr Burkett pointed out.

He stressed the importance of neat, accurate and complete wool clip documentation – wool classer’s specifications that accompany wool clips and assist with lotting.

“This documentation enhances the movement of wool through the pipeline,” he said.

Mr Burkett urged students to embrace new technology and use electronic wool clip stationary now available.

“This will help reduce errors and value add along the pipeline,” he said.

Mr Carter highlighted that, along with their documentation, wool classers needed to alert woolgrowers to the significance of correctly completing and signing the National Wool Declaration.

The quality assurance document helps safeguard the reputation of the Australian wool industry, Mr Carter said.

The students are studying for their Certificate IV in Wool Classing and come from around the State.

They are all working in the industry, are experienced in all aspects of shed duties and have completed Certificate II and III in Advanced Wool Handling.

The course involves 12 topics of correspondence work followed by a three-week intensive TAFE release block at the Narrogin campus.

Trainee wool classers then return to work under the supervision of a registered wool classer prior to their final assessment.

Enquiries about the course can be directed to Mr Carter on 0437 310 825 or



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