Our News

Just Shorn Success: An EPW Rep’s Perspective

March 17, 2015

In January, Elders Primary Wool’s (EPW) Ritchie Hurring traveled to the US for the Carpet One and Flooring America Just Shorn Winter Convention. Selected by his peers at EPW, Ritchie shares his American experience and insights on Just Shorn.

Learn more about Just Shorn and Primary Wool Co-operative relationship here: Capturing Value

A note from Ritchie following his trip to America:

Minus 20 in Washington! Thank goodness for wool!

Let me start by saying a huge thank you to my great company Elders Primary Wool and colleagues for giving me the opportunity to play a larger part in the Just Shorn carpet programme.

What an amazing experience to be part of something with the size and scale of the Carpet One and Flooring America Conventions – the entire event was something that a lad from Balclutha still cannot get his head around!

Held at the Gaylord Convention centre in Washington DC, at over 2000 rooms it was a town within a building, and whether I was in an elevator, a bar or simply getting a hair cut, all the people around me had a interest in flooring!

I found the Americans to be really nice, courteous people . Not so sure of what they made of me but generally the conversation would go ….

“Hi my names Ritchie I’m from New Zealand! I’m in the wool industry! “


“Do you have wool carpet in your store?”


“Wool It comes from a sheep?”


“A sheep – it’s shorn off with a handpeice?”


With the introductions over, I would get my iPad and show them a 10 minute shearing and wool handling movie I made before I left home.

It was very frustrating at times. I recall one morning at 1am having to retrieve my iPad from my room to show a group of beer fueled retailers a sheep being gracefully shorn and then a beautiful Just Shorn fleece being thrown handled and classed! (all completely new too these retailers) and then the nude sheep back in the field making more Just Shorn wool!

That’s how the natural beautiful fibre in Just Shorn carpet is made! God’s own recipe! Sunshine, water and grass! And note nothing dies in this movie!

The fact a 100 percent New Zealand-owned company has managed to claw its way back onto the stage at one of the largest carpet conventions in the world is something that can only be put into perspective by attending a carpet corporation convention launch.

Just Shorn, due to its sheer quality and beauty, is on display alongside carpet giants such as MOWHAWK, whose turnover is more than $5.8 billion, employing 32,500 staff! Then there was SHAW, turnover over $5 billion, employing 22,300 staff! And there was BEAULIE (Bol-You) over $1 billion employing 4,500 staff!

This is an example of just three of our neighbours – all in close proximity to our stand at the convention!

Comparison would be TOYOTA, NISSAN, MAZDA, and Just Shorn is the ROLLS ROYCE! Better still, the retailers selling Just Shorn agree!

To read more about Ritchie’s experience, visit Just Shorn website:Elders Primary Wool Rep Ritchie Hurring visits USA Carpet Convention

Just Shorn™ is an international brand development programme striving to raise awareness and demand for New Zealand Wool to a target market who appreciates the quality of what you produce. In 2010 the Just Shorn™ brand was strategically launched by Elders Primary Wool to stimulate demand for wool carpet in the USA, provide assurance of integrity in the wool and build an exclusive brand in the US market. As Primary Wool Co-operative owns 50% of Elders Primary Wool, we also own 50% of the Just Shorn™ brand and are committed to capturing value for your product. 

To learn more about Just Shorn, visit www.justshorn.com