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INSTYLE’S ETHECO® WOOL FARMER WINS TWO AUSTRALIAN FARMER OF THE YEAR 2010 AWARDS



INSTYLE’s EthEco® wool farmer Michael Blake scooped up two awards, ‘Wool Producer’ and ‘Biosecurity Farmer’

MEDIA RELEASE 5.11.2010

INSTYLE’s EthEco wool farmer Michael Blake scooped up two awards, ‘Wool Producer’ and ‘Biosecurity Farmer’, at the Australian Farmer of the Year Awards.

Bally Glunin Park, in the western district of Victoria, supplies EthEco wool for GLIDE from the LIFE Textiles collection.

The Blake’s on-farm sustainable practices are leading edge and often are adopted as best available practices for the industry.

“At the time, 10 or 12 years ago, we were going out on a limb, but now these programs are common practice,” he says.

For instance, Michael developed a farm safety package, which was eventually taken up by Worksafe Australia and became a national standard.

Over the past 30 years Michael has been involved in at least 75 research projects. A natural worm resistance breeding program led to the successful eradication of external parasites without any external chemicals, which have not been used at Bally Glunin for the past fifteen years.

The Blake’s also run a specialised breeding program for plain-bodied Merino sheep, which are naturally resistant to flystrike and do not require mulesing.

Michael’s passion for sustainable wool growing has led to numerous awards. Michael won the NAB Primary Producer of the Year Award in 2008 and Australia's first Humane Animal Management Assessment Certificate.

Michael’s holistic approach to sustainability is strongly aligned with INSTYLE’s. Like INSTYLE, Michael enjoys a challenge and continuously pushes the boundaries of experimentation and education. “I just couldn’t continue if it was just about carrying on the mundane to day-to-day aspects of farming” says Michael.

INSTYLE is proud to have Michael as a supplier of EthEco wool for its LIFE Textiles collection.

You can visit Bally Glunin Park via INSTYLE’s Farm To Fabric Traceability Program at www.instyle.com.au.

For more information contact:

Michael Fitzsimons, Managing Director, Instyle Contract Textiles

P: + 61 2 9317 0250 E: mfitzsimons@instyle.com.au W: www.instyle.com.au

Backgroun: INSTYLE is committed to the environment and to delivering real environmental change. Instyle has won several high profile sustainability awards, including the following:

2010 WINNER Sustainability Green Globe Awards - Small Business Sustainability Award

2010 WINNER United Nations’ World Environment Day Award - Business Environmental Best Practice Program

2009 WINNER Sustainability Green Globe Awards - Business Sustainability Award
2009 FINALIST United Nations’ World Environment Day Award - Best Specific Environmental Initiative
2008 WINNER United Nations’ World Environment Day Award - Business Sustainability Award
2008 WINNER Sustainability Green Globe Awards - Premier’s Sustainability Excellence Award
2008 WINNER Sustainability Green Globe Awards - Industry Environmental Sustainability
2008 WINNER Sustainability Green Globe Awards - Small Business Environmental Sustainability
2007 FINALIST Banksia Environmental Award - Sustainability
2006 FINALIST Banksia Environmental Award - Sustainability