An Indian fabric maker paid nearly AU $250,000, a record price, for a 200-pound bale of exceptionally high grade wool at a wool auction in Australia.
Five exporters bid for the bale, which was described as the finest ever sold at an auction in Australia. The fineness of the wool refers to the thickness of the fiber and is one measure of its quality: the finer the wool, the lighter the resulting fabric.
The record-setting bale was bought by Raymond Ltd., the biggest maker of woolen fabrics in India. Raymond paid $247,480 Australian dollars (US$237,417) for the bale, which weighed 92 kilograms. The price equates to 2,690 Australian dollars a kilogram (US$1,173 per lb.), more than 300 times the benchmark price of standard Australian wool.
The bale of wool had a fiber width of 11.6 microns compared with an average width of 21 microns for the benchmark. It is enough to make as many as 50 suits. The wool was produced on a farm in New South Wales in Australia.
Source: ASI Weekly News, June 27, 2008.