Why do Ranchers need our Support?

We created Sonoma Wool Company to help support local sheep ranchers.

Local farms and ranches are very important to the economy and land conservation in a community. If these ranches are not able to continue their work, their land might be portioned and sold, making way for big developments like strip malls, subdivisions, and power plants. Keeping their land as “ag land” is most important, it helps keep a community green, and contributes to healthy surroundings.

How does the flow of your dollar matter in your community?

Local ranches also create a trickle down effect in terms of keeping money local. A successful local ranch means successful local businesses, like the Mom and Pop hardware store down the street.

If these ranchers are unable to make ends meet, they might choose to go to a big box store for their hardware needs instead - which eventually leads to the little shops closing down. Keeping your money local is the best thing you can do for your community, so we urge our customers to consciously spend.

Now, more than ever, it seems that supporting local industries is going to be the simplest way to make sure that our communities are economically viable for future generations. It seems simple - but it certainly isn't easy. The way that our capitalist society has been set up makes us think that cheapest and easiest is best. We often have been trained to think that going to the big box stores for everything and anything makes for the best choice! It may be the easiest, but most of the wares found at big box stores are made over seas, and while that doesn't directly speak to their durability, it does directly affect the viability of the industries in our backyard.

Thriving industries mean more jobs, lifelong careers, and flourishing communities. Supporting businesses that will keep the money in these communities is crucial to ensuring these livelihoods. We support USA family ranches because we know how wonderful they can be for surrounding communities, for the families that live on them, and for the animals that they tend to. They are great for keeping the land rural, and are able to keep the income stream direct. We choose to work with sew rooms and wool mills in the USA, too, for the same reasons. We believe in a rich future for our children, and to us, that means sustainable lifestyles - both environmentally and economically.

Our slogan we live by is Re-Discover the Wonders of Wool. It's what we hope to do, to help consumers to learn and understand the wonders that this incredible fiber has. One of the most important ones being that it is sustainable! Domestic wool is an industry that was once thriving, and we believe that with a bit of education, consumers will remember how versatile and beneficial wool can be. Over generations, humans and sheep have developed a symbiotic relationship, and it is time we remember that wool is a gift to mankind. We shear the ewes (female sheep) once a year and gather the wool to be scoured (cleaned). If we did not shear them, the ewes would become weighed down by the wool, causing them to become sedentary and very uncomfortable. The shearing much resembles a haircut, and is not at all harmful to the sheep. Our home ranch in Valley Ford, California works with professional sheep shearers, who treat every ewe with the respect they deserve.

Domestic wool has the potential to be a thriving industry in the modern era. Wool has wonderfully unique qualities that many synthetics try to mimic, like the breathability of each fiber. Why buy something created in a lab that will never decompose (and probably has chemicals within that will have huge negative impacts on the soil when it does hit its resting place), when you can have wool, that will add nutrients to your compost, and completely decompose in around a year!

The list of fantastic, unique qualities of USA Wool is long and inspiring - here are our Top Ten Wonders of Wool:

  1. All Natural
  2. Renewable
  3. Ultra Absorbent
  4. Sustainable
  5. Resist Dirt and Stains
  6. Breathable
  7. Resists Dirt and Mildew
  8. Fire Resistant
  9. Durable
  10. Biodegradable

My personal favorite Wonder of Wool is it's breathability. Each wool fiber has microscopic scales that allow for air to easily circulate around, and even encourages that air flow. This helps to keep wool dry, which prevents little critters like dust mites and bed bugs from nesting inside. This dry environment helps to resist mold and mildew too.

On the back of a sheep, wool wicks sweat away and keeps the sheep free of microbes, protecting them from the elements. On that note, this breathability is what helps wool to keep sheep warm in the winter, but also cool in the summer! Wool has the unique ability to control temperature, by keeping the air circulating through. This makes wool ideal for bedding. Wool will never trap hot air within its fibers, it is constantly letting hot air out and brining cool air in. Wool Bedding is the best bedding for people who sleep hot, or people who experience night sweats. The wool will ensure that the hot air that our bodies produce while sleeping, is wicked away, so that we stay asleep, rather than waking up in a sweat to adjust our position. Using synthetic fabrics that do not breathe is the best way to get night sweats because they don't let hot air out - it gets trapped next to our bodies. Plus, they are terrible for the environment! Our bedding line is encased in 100% cotton, with no dyes or added harsh chemicals. We always recommend pairing our Wool Bedding with a breathable, natural, fabric, so that the wool can fully do its thing. Wool is such a clear winner, sustainable, renewable, biodegradable - and breathable too!

All of our wool is sourced from family ranches in the United States.

From cradle to grave.

Sonoma Wool Company wool is carded and felted in the US, at family owned mills, then packaged and shipped by our team. We make sure to pay everyone who works with us a livable wage, and strive to only work with companies with ethical practices.

Joe Pozzi with Pozzi Ranch for Sonoma Wool Company

Joe Pozzi with Pozzi Ranch

Joe Pozzi ( Pozzi Ranch ) is a multiple generation sheep rancher, and has spent countless years giving back to Sonoma County through land conservation efforts, lobbying for more agricultural land and less concrete development across California.

Sonoma Wool Company is proud to support local family ranches like Joe’s. Little by little, we are working together to leave the world a better place.

- Kelsie Greene, Media Manager, Sonoma Wool Company

 

To contact Kelsie about this, or any other woolly thought you may have, feel free to email her at kelsie@sonomawoolcompany.com.

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