Eastern Cape farmer wins Zegna wool competition

The winner of the 2010 Ermenegildo Zegna fine-wool competition is Stuart Dewing of the farm Highlands in the Eastern Cape’s Cathcart district. His winning fleece measured 15,1 microns.

Runner-up was Willem van Aardt and his son Acton of the Fairworld fine-wool stud in Cook House, followed by Crighton Pringle of the farm Thorndale in Thornton.Stuart and his late father Bruce also won the 2009 competition. And in 2008, they were placed second after New Zealand in the international leg.

The aim of the Ermenegildo Zegna competition, which drew an entry of 87 fleeces this year, is to encourage wool growers to improve the fineness and quality of their wool. The fleeces are judged according to fibre diameter, weight, quality, strength and evenness. Fibre diameter is the most important characteristic, representing 50 out of 100 points.

The Zegna group, one of the world’s largest users of the finest quality South African extra-fine Merino wool, also runs similar competitions in Australia, New Zealand and Argentina.