|IWTO Congress Held in Paris
(June 1, 2010) The 79th congress of the International Wool Textile Organization (IWTO) ended on a positive note for the future of wool. The event took place from May 3-5, 2010, in Paris, France. Under the theme “Wool – Change to a Healthier and Safer Environment,“ prominent speakers made the event a valuable experience, presenting a broad spectrum on the current developments of the global wool industry. The United States was well represented at the congress with a number of exporters, processors, mills and American Sheep Industry Association representatives attending.
The congress has shown through a number of IWTO-run projects and other initiatives that wool as material for apparel, interior textiles and technical textiles is having a remarkable renaissance as the preferred choice for many applications, traditional ones and new ones, especially through its many natural attributes and ecological benefits.
Highlights were the possibilities and variations for creative and innovative applications with wool, which were quoted during the Round Table Discussion with internationally renowned architects who recently attended the IWTO Architects Workshop in New Zealand, namely Louis Becker (Henning Larsen Architects A/S, Copenhagen, Denmark) and Heinz Richardson (Jestico Whiles Architects, London, Great Britain). The session was led by Dietmar Danner, chief executive officer and editor-in-chief of the AIT-Architects Magazine.
The high level of animal welfare within the wool industry was highlighted by speakers at the “Animal Welfare and Environment Session.” Andrea Gavinelli from the European Commission Animal Welfare Unit, Daniela Battaglia from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and Michael Appleby, chief scientist adviser from the World Society for the Protection of Animals, referred to the positive efforts of the wool industry in regard to animal welfare. They agreed to cooperate in the future to assure best practices within the worldwide wool industry ensuring that the welfare of the animals is the focal point of attention.
Günther Beier has been re-elected for another term as IWTO president. As new IWTO vice president, Peter Ackroyd (GB) was elected, replacing Osman Kilic (Turkey) whose term ended at the congress.
New York City will play host to the 2012 IWTO congress.