Representative from Japanese retail chain Muji handle some
of the wool that will go from the Cavalier Woolscours plant
in Timaru to the shelves of one of their 500 shops. Photo
Japanese retail chain Muji sent representatives to Timaru
last week to visit Cavalier Woolscourers Ltd, the biggest and
most modern facility of its type in New Zealand.
Muji has more than 500 shops in 25 countries around the
world. Cavalier Woolscourers chief executive Nigel Hales said
Muji wanted to gain a better understanding of the New Zealand
wool supply chain.
A key concern was traceability from the products' origins
through to the finished goods.
Mr Hales said he was impressed with Muji when he visited one
of its shops in Central Tokyo about a month ago. It was
displaying very high-quality garments made from New Zealand
wool and he was pleased to see the amount of pure wool and
natural fibres used in its products.
Muji shops sell a range of items, including homeware,
cosmetics, electronics and food, as well as clothing.
The Timaru plant was chosen to host the Japanese delegation
because it was well set up to receive wool directly from
farms and to process the high-value Merino clip, he said.
Cavalier Woolscours chief operating officer Tony Cunningham
said he was keen to show the visitors how New Zealand wool
could be traced from the farm through to early processing.
The Muji people could see that the wool was grown in the
South Island's central high country and could still be
identified after having gone through the supply chain.
The guests were invited to help sort the wool and see it
being washed. That would give them first-hand experience of
the wool that would end up on their shop shelves.
''This was the first visit to New Zealand by Muji and they
were delighted to see the high level of professionalism at
the Cavalier Woolscourers site,'' Mr Cunningham said.
The party included Motohiro and Co Ltd president Tetsuya
Motohiro, from Osaka, and Fumihide Satomura, of Ryohin
Keikaku, Tokyo, plus New Zealand wool exporters Peter
Christiansen, from Furhmann Ltd, and Schneider NZ Ltd's Helen