The stars could be about to align for Australian wool growers with production and overseas retail demand both predicted to rise in the coming months.
New analysis shows signs of a bounce back of traditional wool consumption markets overseas and production is expected to go up another notch with favourable seasons and flock rebuilds continuing.
The new analysis from Australian Wool Innovation indicates the markets of UK and the USA for 2021 autumn and winter season are showing growing enthusiasm.
"There is growing optimism from retailers in the UK and the US that vaccination has turned around the worst elements of the pandemic," AWI chief executive Stuart McCullough said.
"The UK's successful vaccination program and staged easing of restrictions has meant consumers are shopping more freely again.
"There is strong interest in clothing sales, particularly knitwear as the spring weather in Britain is some of the coldest in two decades."
The UK National Office of Statistics also reports that clothing stores provided the largest positive contribution to the monthly growth in March 2021, with an increase of 17.5pc in sales volume.
Mr McCullough said greater freedom of movement and socialising is expected to further increase non-essential retail spend and footfall to high street retail locations.
"Social occasions will help to drive renewed demand for apparel, with many younger consumers eager to socialise, releasing pent-up demand for fashion," he said.
"The formal market - suiting in particular - is expecting a V-curve recovery in sales sparked by occasion wear as Britons will be able to attend more formal events including weddings in coming months."
But NSW south-east wool broker for Nutrien Ag Solutions David Hart said although wool production is expected to continue its rise, if other major buyers don't return to the market, it will be up to China to absorb the increased supply.
"There is no doubt production has bounced back strongly, but it is hard to say to what degree," Mr Hart said.
"Even though we can measure receivables, which are about 20 to 30 per cent higher depending on the region, how much of that is old wool that has been held in sheds or how much of it is simply heavier wool cuts and a few more sheep is difficult to quantify.
"The reason the industry will see another increase, even though the wool being held on-farm will effectively have diminished, is the positive movement in the sheep industry."
He said a lot of producers will have had at least one good lambing and those lambs would be getting to an age where they are cutting full fleeces, not just a lamb's fleece.
Market data also shows people are retaining breeding stock, maybe for a year longer than they normally would despite the temptation of high mutton prices.
"Volume wise we will see an improvement, but it remains to be seen how much the Chinese can absorb if we are still solely reliant on the Chinese," Mr Hart said.
"The market can absorb up to around 50,000 bales - and it has shown it will hold - but anything above that may have trouble and psychologically it would affect the market as well."
The UK is the third largest per capita global consumer of wool and is set to be the next cab off the rank after China and South Korea - followed by the United States, Japan, Scandinavia and Western Europe.
The analysis shows in the US, there are signs that quality Italian wool apparel, such as women's coats and next to skin items like baselayer and fine Merino knitwear, has remained resilient throughout the pandemic.
And while the US retail sector is now in its spring/summer period, there is renewed optimism from the Italian mills for wool orders being secured for the impending 2021 autumn/winter season.