20 Nov 2009

Wool auctions to move to Christchurch

5:31 pm on 20 November 2009

The country's largest wool handler will stop its North Island wool auctions in March next year, and move all sales to its base in Christchurch.

Wool Partners International says the move for the bulk of the strong wool clip will make things easier for buyers as well as reducing operating costs for the company.

Chief executive Ian Abercrombie says the decision will not affect growers who send their wool to Napier, as it's only the samples and sales that will move to Christchurch.

All other aspects of wool handling, scouring and exporting carried out in Hawke's Bay will remain there, and the company does not expect that there will be any job losses.

Mr Abercrombie says having one weekly auction which has the majority of the wool in the country will help the company to get better prices for growers.

Wool Exporters Council executive manager Nick Nicholson believes the decision will be good for growers. South Island prices have generally been stronger, he says.

Meanwhile, Mr Abercrombie says the company eventually wants to move to electronic sales.