Tag Archives: sheep

The U.S. Meat Animal Research Center in Clay Center, Neb., is looking to hire a sheep geneticist as the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal Research Service looks to fill hundreds of vacancies all across the country. Applicants will need to hurry, however. The posting will run only through June 8 or until 50 applications are received, whichever comes first.

From the job posting, “The incumbent is responsible for carrying out genetic and genomic research with the goal of enhancing health, efficiency and sustainability of sheep within Project ‘Genetic Research to Enhance Efficient and Sustainable Production of Beef Cattle and Sheep.’ The incumbent will lead experiments using sheep in support of ARS National Program 101 (Food Animal Production). Experiments are often multi-generation and multi-disciplinary, involving more than 2,000 breeding ewes. The incumbent is responsible for understanding fundamental constraints of the sheep industry, identifying research opportunities, designing and conducting innovative experiments, analyzing data, writing manuscripts and disseminating results and technical advice to many segments of the sheep industry.”

To learn more, or to apply, visit https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/500681900.

Apparel manufacturers are a scarce breed in today’s U.S. textile landscape. Low-cost imports and high labor costs forced much of the domestic apparel manufacturing sector offshore in recent decades.

But in certain product areas, this trend can be reversed, as Kentwool Inc. and American Woolen Company have found by using a vertically-integrated business model. By controlling the production process from yarn spinning to finished product, Kentwool and American Woolen are finding success with premium apparel brands focused on wool, a natural fiber known for its thermal comfort, breathability and ability to be worn across seasons.

Kentwool and American Woolen both have histories going back more than a century. While their products and end markets may be very different, the commitment to quality, craftsmanship and heritage are equally important to both forward-looking, modern manufacturers.

Kentwool is a family-owned and -operated company that more recently applied its expertise in wool yarn spinning to launch an apparel business known as Kentwool Performance Apparel. Established in 1843 in Pennsylvania by Thomas Kent and now headquartered in Greenville, S.C., Kentwool owns a 135,000-square-foot state-of-the-art wool-based yarn spinning facility in nearby Pickens, which houses approximately 20,000 spindles and produces yarn from 100-percent wool or wool/man-made blends. In addition to its generations-old, high-quality wool yarn operation, the company boasts a thriving consumer-facing, ultra-premium performance sock business.

American Woolen Company recently gained new life thanks to the dedication and vision of Jacob Harrison Long. Established in 1899, the company grew to become the world’s largest wool manufacturer in the early 20th century. But years after its heyday, the company had diminished and become primarily an importer and wholesaler of woolen blankets. Long purchased the brand in 2013, and later had the opportunity to invest in a manufacturing location in the form of historic Stafford Springs, Conn.-based Warren Mill – a cashmere and camel hair woolen fabrics plant with more than 150 years of history. Under the leadership of CEO Long and President and COO Jennifer Knight, American Woolen Company is reestablishing itself as a premiere, luxury brand name, and is finding success once again as a fine worsted and woolen textile manufacturer.

Read the full story at http://www.textileworld.com/textile-world/2018/05/going-vertical/.

The American Sheep Industry Association sent a letter last week to U.S. Department of Agriculture Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Greg Ibach requesting the return of free, plastic scrapie tags for American producers.

“I wanted to draw your attention to the Small Ruminate line item within the APHIS budget,” wrote ASI President Mike Corn of New Mexico. “That line item is the sole source of funding for the National Scrapie Eradication Program, a top priority for the domestic sheep industry. Scrapie has continued to cost our industry more than $20 million per year, and while we are close to our goal of being scrapie free, we must remain diligent in our commitment to the program. A critical component of that program is identifying and ear tagging sheep and goats. Citing funding issues, APHIS decided in the last year to halt provision of plastic tags to producers at no charge.

“For the sheep and goat industries, plastic tags are much preferred, which results in greater overall compliance,” Corn continued. “Metal ear tags if caught in comb and cutter of a shearing clipper, pose a tremendous danger to both the shearer and the sheep. The industry has continued to disseminate educational materials to sheep producers nationwide on these dangers and best practices through the nationally recognized Sheep Care Guide, but the solution is to offer the tags in both a metal and plastic option, or solely plastic.”

Congress appropriated an additional $500,000 for the small ruminant line item in Fiscal Year 2019, and ASI is requesting those funds be used to once again make plastic tags available to producers.