Busy year for the DNA program

At the DNA Williams Launch: (Front LtR) co owners Ryan Duff, Simon and Kim Maylor  and Sara Duff with Cynthia Jarratt (AWN). (Back row) Peter Howie (Dyson Jones), Rod Miller (AWN) and  Barry Silbert (WA agent for MerinoSnug).

It’s been a busy start to the year for AWN’s DNA provenance program with the launch of three separate regional woolgrower brand stories plus the commencement of several new programs.

The Direct Network Advantage (DNA) program is a direct-to-mill supply arrangement that allows AWN clients to follow the journey of their wool from bale to retail.  Importantly, the DNA Program provides a number of network advantages including price assurance for wools that meet specification. However, for many growers, knowing where their wool ends up and what product it is made into is one of the most important aspects of the program.  It’s also an opportunity for woolgrowers to share their woolgrowing story with the end user, the wool‑wearing consumer.

“People can watch the grower videos and see where the wool is grown in the Williams’ region...”

A first for Hedrena

2019 kicked off with a visit to Western Australia with the Dyson Jones team to begin a brand story for Hedrena products. This program is still in its early stages but non mulesed wool supplied by Edale from the Moora region in Western Australia is now being received to contribute to the manufacturing of Hedrena products.  Hedrena products already use non mulesed wool but up until now, none that were specifically from AWN/Dyson Jones clients.


A Genuine Bale to Retail for

Western Australia

Five specially selected woolgrowing families from the Williams region in Western Australia are participating in the state’s first bale to retail wool provenance program which was launched last December and is creating plenty of interest. Peter Howie Western Australian State Manager from Dyson Jones and Rod Miller South Australian State Manager from AWN have been working with Williams’ woolgrowers and the owners of The Williams Woolshed to bring the program together.

Williams Woolshed is a family operated multi-brand retail space, café and tourist destination located 150km south-east of Perth in the small rural town of Williams.

Co-owner of The Williams Woolshed (and daughter of participating DNA woolgrower Glen Ford), Kim Maylor’s enthusiasm knows no bounds when she talks about the relationship between the grower and retailer and sharing with her customers the story of wool and where it comes from.

“A lot of tourists come through The Williams Woolshed and I love the fact that we are able to share the growers’ stories with people coming from far and wide,’’ she said.

“People can watch the grower videos and see where the wool is grown in the Williams’ region, how passionate our woolgrowers are and learn about the wool industry.

“I am so grateful that we are able to sell MerinoSnug garments and now we can say we are selling Williams’ wool which has been used for these garments. It makes me very proud to sell something that has been grown in Williams and manufactured in Australia – it is very exciting.’’

The DNA Williams program included a fashion parade which was filmed and is now part of the DNA woolgrowing stories sharing the unique connection all the way from the sheep’s back to the fashion runway.

This is the first woolgrower owned ‘bricks and mortar’ retail space and it has established a unique and special connection for the participating woolgrowers. Kim Maylor said recently that sales of the product had far exceeded their expectations after the launch of DNA Williams.

“Launching at the beginning of summer was not really ideal for knitwear sales but in reality sales of our MerinoSnug products with the Williams wool were actually terrific. 
We needed to top up stock on accessories almost immediately.

“We are mostly excited to see how our sales will go over the coming cooler winter months with our international travellers,” said Kim.

Capturing Limestone Coast sheep in their natural environment…did prove more challenging to film than we thought – be sure to ask Rod Miller about it!

South Australia Leads the Way

South Australia continues to dominate our DNA Program with two more launches taking place in March and April this year, bringing the total number of DNA Programs for the state up to four.

In addition there are three more programs already in development aligning with other significant regional wool growing areas of South Australia.

DNA Limestone Coast was launched at the spectacular South East Field Days held in Lucindale in March and DNA Flinders Outback was launched at a premier gala event held at the Edicara Biota Gallery at the South Australian Museum in Adelaide in early April.

The inclusion of DNA Tambo in April this year was not only a first for Queensland but has rounded out our program to now make the DNA Program a national wool provenance program.

Both events were extremely well attended and helped to reiterate that South Australian wool growers are among some of the most innovative in the world when it comes to promoting their wool and that they fully understand the power of provenance marketing.

The DNA Limestone Coast stories showcase sustainable wool growing, easy-care sheep and the commitment and care that it takes to grow wool in an environmentally friendly way in this unique part of South Australia.

The DNA Flinders Outback stories share a common ‘spirit of the land’ theme by featuring epic drone footage across the Flinders Ranges and Outback. The stories reflect the spirit of an ancient land and how it connects to the woolgrowers and the wool that is used to manufacture MerinoSnug products.

AWN Wool Specialist Deanne Irwin proudly speaking in an iconic setting for the launch of DNA Flinders Outback

Queensland Gets on Board

The inclusion of DNA Tambo in April this year was not only a first for Queensland but has rounded out our program to now make the DNA Program a national wool provenance program.

The four stories for the Tambo region were revealed on Saturday 27 April at the annual Tambo Stock Show in front of invited guests, members of parliament and show patrons.

Drone footage was yet again a feature of the woolgrowing stories and created blockbuster vision of the vast golden plains of the Turnbull family’s property, Lansdowne Pastoral, located in the Tambo region.

The DNA Tambo stories focused on the land, the woolgrowers, the community and the connection they all share. And it wouldn’t be a story about Tambo unless we had featured the famous Tambo Teddies – another inspirational and innovative wool story from the region.
Enjoying the launch (LtoR), Tony Smith, Rawnsley Park Station, Hawker | Dan van Holst Pellekaan, Member of the South Australian House of Assembly, Adelaide | Peter Calahan, Regional Manager, Partnerships, SA Tourism, Adelaide | Di and Peter Barrie, Pinda, Orroroo.

Hume Turnbull, Lansdowne Pastoral at the DNA Tambo launc



Woolgrowers from the Grampians regions in Victoria were the state’s early adopters of our DNA program having contributed wool to the program for a number of years now. 
The DNA Grampians story was filmed late last year and will be launched to the public at Sheepvention in August this year.



Tasmania, New South Wales and more

Further developments are underway to expand and create new DNA programs in Tasmania and NSW with a number nearing their final stages and ready to commence shortly. We are always looking for more efficient and innovative ways to market our clients’ wool and this year will see the commencement of a new ‘unskirted’ version of DNA provenance stories that allows us to use home-grown video content supplied by our clients. We are excited by this next chapter in DNA and look forward to bringing this to you over the next 12 months.


QLD guests at the DNA Tambo launch Peter Nevell, John Turnbull and Alan Hirsch.



Working with growers to film  the Flinders Outback region was very special indeed -

such an incredible landscape.




There are a number of key performance drivers for our DNA program. First and foremost is the engagement and response from our clients, which continues to exceed our expectations. Marketing our clients’ wool differently, in an innovative and progressive way continues to be highly regarded by our clients.

Consumer engagement is our next point of measure via digital and social media.  And on this, the results are pleasing, with almost 15,000 lifetime plays of our various different 43 woolgrower stories.  It has been challenging to compile all of our digital touchpoints into one easy-to-analyse report but with additional resources allocated this year we are confident we can gain a more accurate picture of how our woolgrower stories

are performing.


Facebook continues to have the most engagement from consumers with the highest number of likes, shares and watches originating from here.

Our swing tags and point of sale boards which bear the QR (quick reader) code that link the consumer directly through to the video have had positive results with around 30% of plays originating from a swing tag. The point of sale (POS) boards have had significantly less (< 2%) but the results are in line with our expectations given where these are used and the limited available retail space.


In addition to our own KPI’s is also the retail feedback which continues to remain positive and exceed expectations. Overall the DNA Program continues to be a valuable initiative for both AWN and our clients. There are numerous advantages for our clients and, for those not directly involved, the advantages are delivered in a way that helps AWN become a stronger and more diversified company committed to delivering more innovation in

wool marketing.



For more information contact your AWN Wool Specialist here