The Stud Merino Breeders Association WA was pleased with the proposed new code, which it felt guaranteed Merino wool bales against claims of dark and medullated fibre contami-nation.
AWEX chief executive officer Mark Grave confirmed AWEX had received letters from the Dohne and Prime SAMM industry bodies, indicating that they would like the proposed classing code of conduct reconsi-dered.
In a letter to Mr Grave on be-half of the Prime SAMM Society of Australia, past national presi-dent Rocco De Bellis said the industry had major objections to the AWEX proposal.
Mr De Bellis said AWEX had overstepped the boundary of its mandate and the proposed code was discriminatory against non-Merino breed producers.
³We believe that branding of wools on a breed basis given the cross breeding between Merino flocks over the past 10 years will be impossible to police,² Mr De Bellis said.
³It will place an extra cost burden to woolgrowers in an already ailing industry.²
Prime SAMM and Dohne breeders are also upset that they were not consulted by AWEX when the draft code of practice was being prepared.
Mr De Bellis said instead they had had to rely on various other sources for information on what was happening.
³You would have to assume that there is more politics than commonsense, and AWEX dealings in this matter certainly reflect this,² he said.
³This raises serious questions; if AWEX was concerned of potential contamination, why wouldn¹t you test at the source and consult with the groups in question?
³What does Œpotential contamination¹ mean?
³Does this mean the AWEX testing of wools have been inconclusive and, if so, why have these non-findings been leaked to the industry to the detriment of our breed?²