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Beyond the Bale : March 2014
The world famous Woolmark brand -- owned by Australian woolgrowers -- is this year celebrating its golden anniversary. "For 50 years the brand has built its reputation as being one of the world's leading textile fibre brands, and its enduring appeal continues to deliver significant returns to Australian woolgrowers," AWI Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer Rob Langtry says. FAST FACTS l 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the world-famous Woolmark brand. l Since the now iconic Woolmark logo was first designed in 1964, it has been applied to more than five billion products worldwide. l The logo's enduring appeal continues to deliver significant returns to Australian woolgrowers through its use in AWI's global marketing campaigns as well as the Woolmark Licensing Program. The Woolmark brand's golden anniversary "The value of the Woolmark brand is well established and highly regarded across the world in the apparel, interior textiles and home laundry sectors. Since the creation of the original logo in 1964, more than five billion products have carried the Woolmark logo as a symbol of fibre content and quality assurance. "As well as being essential to the Woolmark Licensing Program, the Woolmark logo is pivotal to most of the marketing that AWI undertakes. The Merino Wool. No Finer FeelingTM fibre advocacy campaign, and the Cool Wool and Woolmark Gold campaigns all include the Woolmark logo on their advertising collateral. The Campaign for Wool uses a stylised green Woolmark logo to reinforce the 'eco' credentials of wool, and the International Woolmark Prize has attracted phenomenal interest from the international fashion communities and media." So what was the origin of the iconic Woolmark symbol? The rise of synthetic fibres in the post- war period posed a major threat to the Since its launch in 1964, the Woolmark logo has become one of the world's most well-known and respected logos. AWI continues to use it to promote Australian wool through all of its global marketing campaigns. global wool industry, and so in 1963, on behalf of the International Wool Secretariat, a global design competition was launched to create a graphic logo or mark which would represent the universal appeal and quality of wool. This was the driving force behind the Woolmark brand and in 1964 the Woolmark symbol was born. "The logo's strength is in its simplicity: five black bands criss-crossing to form a skein of wool which perfectly represents the softness, elegance and modernity of the fibre. It is one of very few long-running logos that still feels contemporary despite not having been altered since its creation," Mr Langtry says. It is believed the iconic logo was created by an Italian graphic artist called Francesco Saroglia. Mysteriously however, Francesco Saroglia seems to have disappeared without a trace since winning the design competition. There are no books featuring his other works, no records of any exhibitions, no web pages pulling up information on this elusive designer. But while Saroglia's actual existence might have failed to withstand the test of time, the logo officially credited to him continues to attract critical acclaim. In 2011 the UK's leading magazine for visual communication Creative Review voted the Woolmark symbol as the top logo of all time. Last year, a survey conducted by USA graphic design journal GDUSA voted the logo as the 11th favourite logo from the past half century. "As the Woolmark brand enjoys its 50th anniversary during 2014, AWI is concentrating on new challenges, such as the necessity to educate the younger generation of consumers, the growth of emerging economies and the impact of the digital technologies," Mr Langtry adds. "The core values of the brand -- quality, innovation and respect of the environment -- are very much aligned to the needs and desires of contemporary consumers, looking for a new idea of luxury which is both more authentic and eco-conscious. Our global network will continue to manage these core values, supporting Australian woolgrowers who own the brand and the company, long into the future." More information: www.woolmark.com 20 OFF-FARM March 2014 BEYOND THE BALE