Farming is in the blood of Warren D’Ath’s family and he is passionate about wool. His father was a farmer and his grandfather’s father was a farmer – with roots tracing back over 100 years. Located in the Manawatu, Warren runs a Romney and Perendale Stud farm with Romdale sheep. He produces about 23,000 kilos of wool and sends over 200 rams around New Zealand a year.
Warren first discovered Primary Wool Co-operative when he started his wool through Elders, and Roger Hale told him about the farmer owned wool co-operative. As a firm believer in co-operatives, Warren trusts in the concept that more of the profits should go back to the grower and the industry.
Disenchanted by industry wool prices, Warren sees hope in Primary Wool Co-operative. “The industry is not better than it was 30 years ago but our costs are still rising,” he says. “Wool is 12 percent of my income but we need a significant increase to make it a worthwhile part of our income. Initiatives like Just Shorn™ can do that if they act quickly. I am enthusiastic about Just Shorn™.”
Warren recognises the difficulty the leadership face. “Bay’s done a fantastic job, but I would like to see more change at a faster pace in order for wool to remain a viable part of the farmer’s income.”
Warren concludes, “Good luck and all the best. It’s a forward-thinking organisation.”