Peter Ackroyd at the Wool Academy Podcast

In this episode, we talk to Peter Ackroyd who is the COO of the Campaign for Wool and the President of the International Wool Textile Organisation (IWTO). Peter shares insights about the start of the Campaign for Wool together with HRH The Prince of Wales and the latest campaign’s event. He also talks about provenance and wool’s environmental credentials providing value to retailers, brands and the consumer.

About Peter Ackroyd

Peter Ackroyd is the Global Strategic Advisor for The Woolmark Company in Sydney, Australia and the Chief Operating Officer of the Campaign for Wool. In May 2011 he was elected President of the International Wool Textile Organisation and re-elected in April 2016. Specialising in world markets for woollen and worsted yarns and fabrics, Peter has particular expertise in marketing in Europe, the Middle East, Japan, Korea and China, along with in-depth knowledge of the menswear supply chain ‘from farm to fashion’. He also serves as Vice President of the Strategy Board of Première Vision Paris.

Connect with Peter Ackroyd here

Campaign for Wool

International Wool Textile Organisation (IWTO)

The Woolmark Company

Explore and get inspired by the Wool Lab

Key Timestamps

[spp-timestamp time=”02:00″] Growing up in Bradford and start of his wool career

[spp-timestamp time=”04:00″] Career stage in Irak

[spp-timestamp time=”06:27″] How the Campaign for Wool started

[spp-timestamp time=”09:10″] What price are consumers willing to pay for wool

[spp-timestamp time=”12:00″] Talking about the Davos of Wool

[spp-timestamp time=”14:20″] How to join the Campaign for Wool

[spp-timestamp time=”15:15″] Explaining the concept of provenance

[spp-timestamp time=”18:30″] The value of the Woolmark Prize

[spp-timestamp time=”20:00″] What do designers like about the story of wool

[spp-timestamp time=”23:05″] Increasing importance of active sportswear

[spp-timestamp time=”24:22″] Cool Wool

[spp-timestamp time=”24:22″] Wool for all seasons


Let us know what you think or ask us a question in the below comment area.

Tone Skardal Tobiasson

Design Destined for Trash vs. Wonderful to Wear – Journalist Tone Skardal Tobiasson is demystifying fast fashion and highlights the opportunities designers have when talking about the fibres they use such as wool.

About Tone Skardal Tobiasson

Tone Skårdal Tobiasson is a seasoned journalist, editor and author of several books, including one on wool which she co-wrote with Professor Ingun Grimstad Klepp. She has a BA in journalism and sociology from Stanford University and worked as editor of several fashion publications for close to two decades. In 2007 she co-founded the Nordic Fashion Association and the NICE (Nordic Initiative Clean & Ethical) Fashion project, and has since been engaged in sustainable fashion. It was through this work that she discovered wool, and has headed dissemination for a number of wool projects – both academic and more commercial. She writes for EcoTextile News, is editor of – where the results from some of the work with wool is published. Currently she is trying to organize the Norwegian wool industry into a functioning organization, but has so far not been able to ‘herd them’ into a cohesive entity.

Connect with Tone Skardal Tobiasson here





Key Timestamps

1:27: Introduction to Tone
03:40: Why Norwegians wear so much wool
07:30: About the KRUS project
11:40: The advantages of on-shore manufacturing
16:30: Knowledge gap of the consumer
19:10: Barriers to Wool
25:30: Social Media Usage
28:30: Recommendation how the wool industry should use social media
33:30: Movement against fast fashion
37:36: How can Young Designers tap into the Slow Fashion movement
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Lesley Prior

UK based wool grower Lesley Prior of the sheep property Bowmont near Devon gives insights on how she created a successful wool operation with different sources of income streams through engagement along the supply chain.

About Lesley Prior from Bowmont UK

Lesley Prior is a sheep farmer producing Superfine Merino wool and Mongolian grade Cashmere in the UK under the brand name BOWMONT. She has strong international links with other wool growers and regularly imports new genetics from Australia. Lesley is, together with a business partner in Australia, currently developing a new strain of Dual Purpose Merino with wide appeal to European growers.

A council member of the Campaign For Wool, she has broad experience of the industry from greasy fibre to finished garment.  She was recently invited to speak to the Australian Superfine Wool Growers Association Congress about marketing wool direct to retailers in Northern Europe.

Over the past few years Lesley has developed a Consultancy service and has worked in Afghanistan for the US Government and for a Growers Group in Switzerland. She has a unique knowledge of the supply and processing chain for both wool and cashmere and the particular challenges of marketing to Northern European consumers. She enjoys sharing her passion for the wool industry by creating new connections and business opportunities for people.

Connect with Lesley here


 Key Timestamps

1:30: Introduction to Lesley Prior and her sheep operation Bowmont UK
8:50: The potential of Merino sheep farming in europe
10:35: Income streams of Bowmont UK
12:50: Biggest issues at Bowmont UK
13:28: Collaboration with Finisterre
18:10: The importance of communications
19:55: About Bowmont’s involvement in the Campaign for Wool
24:23: What does a typical day look like
27:50: The passion for wool
30:00: Collaboration within the wool industry is key for success
34:20: The need of more communications in the industry
Rikki Beier from Ikki

Founder Rikki Beier launched her start up Ikki Small But Brave in 2014 bringing soft merino wool baby wear to the Chinese market. In this episodes she shares insights what it is like to be a start up in China.

About Rikki Beier

Ricci  Beier (born and raised in South Africa to German parents) is the founder of IKKI small but brave an infant/toddler brand making high end merino wool products for 0-4 year olds. Wool is Ricci’s passion. Coming from 3 generations of wool processing it was clear that she would herself want to pass on this passion.

With a degree in textile engineering from Germany, 7 years work experience in Biella Italy, the central for high end yarns and luxurious fabrics including wool and 8 years in China helping to build Indochino a company specializing in mens custom made suits, she decided to provide a solution for moms looking for certified quality product – a big need she felt had not yet been properly met in China. Wool was the natural answer because it has so many benefits.

IKKI was founded because Ricci wanted to do something meaningful that could have a positive impact on society and the way mothers and fathers make consumer choices. Giving back is at the core of the business model with a percentage of all sales going to children in need.

Connect with Rikki Beier here:







Key Timestamps

01:56: Introduction of Ikki
03:43: Chinese Wool Consumers
05:15: Educating Consumers about Wool
08:50: Selling your story – People buy what you believe in
10:50: Explaining the wool story and in addition to all the other benefits of the product
12:40: Social Media and creating content around your brand’s story
15:30: Ikki’s number one challenge in the business today
17:40: About fabric development in China
21:0: What was the biggest challenge at Ikki in the past
22:05: Key learnings
24:50: PR opportunities and sales strategy
28:34: Giving back to community
30:34: What is the right price for wool
35:00: How can the wool industry support wool start ups
37:00: The Rikki and Ikki connection
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