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Price of wool used in carpets has decreased

The wholesale price for British wool has fallen to £1 a kilo – a drop of 30% in price – in the last 14 months.

China is the world’s biggest user of wool, but demand has dropped in the country and this is one of the main reasons why world wool demand has gone down in recent months. There was a trend for women’s knitted wool coats, but Chinese fashion has changed, and these coats are now less popular.

In Britain, wool is a byproduct of the meat trade, so a drop in wool prices may not be too much of a problem for farmers. When wool prices drop, farmers cannot produce less wool, meaning excess fleeces remain unsold.

British wool is used in high-quality carpets and carpet tiles. Demand for wool carpets is steady, but is not enough to increase the price paid for British wool. Fine wool jumpers tend to use the merino wool which is sold at premium price. Merino sheep do not produce as much meat as conventional breeds, so British farmers are unlikely to switch.

Cheaper wool could mean that the price of wool-based contract flooring in Liverpool offices will not rise in price. Wool carpets are hardwearing, flame retardant and keep their appearance longer than synthetic carpets. They are stain resistant, but require professional carpet cleaning at least once a year. Wool absorbs sound so is suitable for busy offices, and is usually perceived as a luxury floor covering.

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