Winter 2022

Northwest Farm Credit: Rural, Real Estate, Operating Loans; Farm Loans; Country Home Loans; Lot Loans; Equipment Financing; Young and Beginning Producers; Crop Insurance; Business Management Education; Property Appraisals

Issue link: https://digital.nexsitepublishing.com/i/1458135

Contents of this Issue


Page 13 of 27

stewardship giving 13 Northwest FCS Wool Lab research helps producers tap into growing consumer demand for sustainable wool products grown in the U.S. Montana State University Wool Lab | Bozeman It's fire retardant, naturally odor resistant and absorbs 40% of its weight in water. Thanks to growing demand for sustainable products, consumers also appreciate the concept of using sheep to manage Montana's 68 million acres of rangeland – grazing invasive weeds and wildfire prone areas – while producing renewable, high-quality products. Improving flock productivity and quality The Montana Wool Lab has supported sheep producers for 75 years. In 2021, the lab analyzed more than 15,000 fiber samples for wool producers across the country. Specific, individual samples are used to determine the In 2021, the Montana legislature provided $5 million to replace the aging wool lab on Montana State University's campus in Bozeman. With an additional $1 million needed, MSU and the Montana sheep industry turned to their partners for help, including their friends at Northwest Farm Credit. The Northern Great Plains, including Montana, is the center of fine wool production in the United States. Montana currently ranks eighth in the nation with 250,000 head of sheep and lambs, producing 1.5 million pounds of wool. This quality wool is sought after by members of the military and outdoor enthusiasts alike. The Montana Wool Lab is helping producers tap into growing consumer demand for natural fibers and wool products produced in the U.S. It's one of only two research and service laboratories in the nation designed to help producers improve the traits of their wool through genetics, ultimately boosting their incomes sustainably.

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