Knitting Yarn Review – Possum Fur Yarn

Using possum yarn is great way to make easy, fast to knit items like hats, scarves and mittens into something very unique and special. Possum fur is usually blended with high quality merino fibres to make a yarn that is light, soft and very warm.

Possum fur fibres are actually hollow, which makes it a natural heat exchanger. This means that garment made of possum-wool blends are very warm in cold weather, and also able to exchange heat when the wearer is active.

This makes possum-wool garments very comfortable and ideal for people who love outdoor activities in colder climates (a great niche to be in as these people are often prepared to spend a lot of money on getting the warmest, most comfortable clothing – think of the prices that high end outdoor and mountaineering brands fetch!)

Some example niche markets are walkers, hikers, mountaineers, golfers, fishermen, kayakers, cross-country and downhill skiiers, mountain bike and push bike riders as well as motorcyclists and vintage car drivers!

Possum wool blends are also very soft to the touch, which means they are an easy item to sell when you can get your customers to feel them and put them on. It is a very lightweight yarn and many times warmer than wool alone, and in knitwear possum fur resists pilling and is a lot fluffier. Possum fur has minimal skin irritation so is suitable for people with sensitive skin.

Possum fur is mostly harvested in New Zealand where the possum is a national pest that causes terrible damage to their world heritage forests. If you buy Supreme Possum Merino yarn they donate 5% of the sale to the preservation of New Zealand environment.

Possum fur yarn is not cheap, but using it will give you superior products that you will be able to charge more for, especially if you target one of the lucrative outdoor activity markets.

Comments

  1. In regards to possum wool, is the animal killed for its fur? As I don’t kill animals to eat I would not like to do this to make garments. I’m sure it is helping the environment in New Zealand but even so I personally do not wish to take a life. When I ask assistance in wool stores how the wool is harvested they look at me blankly. I’m not sure that they are aware that its not like the sheep or the alpaca that can be harvested without killing the animal. Hopefully you can answer my question.
    thanks
    angela

  2. Hi Angela, thanks for your question – it certainly is a difficult issue. You are right in saying that possum fur is not like the wool of a sheep or alpaca, so they can’t “shear” possums to collect their fur. However, because of the environmental problems in New Zealand that you mention, there are programs in place to cull their numbers. So whether possum yarn was manufactured or not, the possums would be culled regardless. There are many people who are uncomfortable with this and wouldn’t use the yarn for this reason, but there are also many people who believe that it is better to use the resource and not waste it. We each have to make a decision based on our own beliefs.

  3. Hi Angela,
    I can fully understand your problem.
    I had the same feelings and as I was curious about the quality of the wool, I hadn’t known about it until a fortnight ago, I read and researched a lot.
    I am now convinced that it is a brilliant idea to use the fur. The creatures would be killed anyway and so some of the damage can hopefully be repaired. I think they are very cuddly but with regard to the nature I think something has to be done. And using the fur and meat is just the right thing to do and not wasting the animals completely.
    The main problem is that our ancestors imported into Australia and NZ animals which were not endemic there and no natural enemies. Here, these are the possums, in Australia we have the Camels and rabbits. And we all have to accept the responsibility for the mistakes in the past. Now we have to try to repair the damage as good as possible. So we have to kill deer in NZ as well and why not making sense of it and use it?
    I certainly wouldn’t have decided to buy possum wool and start trading with it now here in England if I wouldn’t have the security that these creatures were “harvested” in farms and had a terrible life!

  4. marten says:

    Thanks Monika for your thoughtful and measured response. As  a maori – descended landowner of coastal native bush land in new zealand I can attest that the devastation of ancient stands of pohutukawa and the silencing of birdsong due to the possum plague is real and urgent.. possum are the equivalent of vermin in the context of new zealand's ecology.  Would we encourage  free rein of rats on the streets of london or sydney or new york?  Possum must be controlled and if  by-products increase in market value via products like these the culling  of these eco-vermin will be sustained in a time when our conservative govt is making draconian cut – backs on environmental protection.  PLEASE BUY POSSUM WOOL !!!

  5. Hi there,

    Great post, as a dedicated Possum fur and Merino products outlet I wonder if you think there is currently enough choice in the Possum Merino Yarn market?
    We have done some research and found that there are still not that many quality suppliers of Possum fur yarn and would like to know your thoughts as we are looking at producing our own range?
    Thanks:-)