Today (Thurs) was our day for the TN Sheep Producers Wool Pool. We took all the wool that we had sheared from our sheep, and the wool from the other flocks the kids had sheared to the wool pool, where all the sheep producers sell their wool. We had the most wool ever! And the prices were at a record high $1.13/# for black or white faced fleece. So now the garage is not covered with bags of wool- that was my cleaning job for today.
TN Sheep Producers Wool Pool is the oldest agricultural pool in the county. It started in the late 1800’s with a yearly lamb sale, and then branched out into wool. Each year one representative negotiates the price for all our wool. Dr. Jim Neal, UT Extension has been doing that job for many years. Then 2 days in June all the sheep producers haul their wool to Columbia or Marysville, TN to have it graded, weighted and baled. Today we received over 8700 pounds of wool. TN usually has about 20K pounds of wool.
It is hard work to get the wool through all the processes, but lots of hands make light work, and many sheep producers stay and help, along with UT Extension employees. And everyone who works the whole shift is treated to Pulled Pork sandwiches with the fixin’s for lunch. It is wonderful to see everyone working together to get the job done. There is a bit of good natured joking and kidding that goes on! And the collective knowledge of sheep and the sheep industry in that warehouse is incredible. Over the years many questions and problems have been solved at the wool pool, as more experienced producers help those new to the project. Several teens, young sheep producers, help and are included in the whole process, and often given the really dirty jobs!