Processing of fibres into wool
Animal fibres of Class 7
what are the Processing of fibres into wool
The wool which is used for knitting sweaters or for weaving shawls is the finished product of a long process, which involves the following steps:
- Step I: in the first step the fleece of the sheep with its thin layer of skin is removed from its body. This process is known as shearing. Machines similar to those used by barbers are used to shave off hair. In general, all the hair are removed during the hot weather so that sheep can survive without their protective coat of hair. The hair provide woolen fibres.
Woolen fibers are use to produce woollen yarn. Shearing does not hurt the sheep, The uppermost layer of the skin is dead. Also, the hair of sheep grow again just as human hair does.
- Step II: After collecting the the sheared skin with hair it is thoroughly washed in tanks so that all grease, dust and dirt removed and the entire hair are clean, This is called scouring. Nowadays scouring is done by machines
- Step III: After scouring, sorting is done. The hairy skin is sent to a factory, in factory all the hair of different textures are separated or sorted.
- Step IV: The small fluffy fibres, called burrs, are picked out from the hair. These are the same burrs which sometimes appear on your sweaters. The fibres are scoured again and dried. This is the wool ready to be drawn into fibres.
- Step V: After that all the fibres can be dyed in different colours, because the natural fleece of sheep and goats are generally black, brown or white.
- Step VI: The fibres are straightened, combed and rolled into yarn .The longer fibres are made into wool for sweaters and the shorter fibres are spun and woven into woollen cloth.
In India many people earn their livelihood from the wool industry. However, the sorter’s job can be dangerous. They can get infected by a bacterium called anthrax, which causes a fatal blood disease called sorter’s disease. When workers face such risk due to their occupation, it is called an occupational hazard. Sheep rearing is a lot of hard work