Humane Society International (HSI) Australia has launched the latest edition of its ‘Better Wool Guide’ which features over 200 brands that are part of the growing movement to phase out the controversial practice of mulesing.

HSI Australia’s downloadable ‘Better Wool Guide’ highlights 221 brands available to Australian consumers with a commitment to remove mulesed wool from their supply chains, with many already claiming to be mulesing-free.

The launch is said to signal the continuing shift in the animal welfare expectations of Australian consumers, with 75 more brands included since the last edition of the guide released last year. Newcomers include Aussie brands Koala, Spell, Afends and Zulu & Zephyr. They join the likes of Country Road Group, Gorman, Target, Big W, The Iconic, David Jones, H&M and Myer in their support for better welfare measures.

Big name brands like VF Corporation, Levi Strauss & Co, adidas and NIKE have strengthened their commitments since the last edition of the Better Wool Guide and now rank in Tier 1.

Roughly one in 10 Australian wool growers are already catering to the rising consumer demand and producing non-mulesed wool through the breeding of plain bodied sheep without wrinkles, making them naturally flystrike resistant.

Georgie Dolphin, animal welfare campaigner at HSI Australia said: “Australia is well and truly singled out, being the only country in the world supplying mulesed wool. Aussie consumers and retailers alike are making it clear they are calling time on this cruelty.

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“The conversation on mulesed wool has shifted dramatically in recent years to one of condemnation, so it’s encouraging to see so many brands becoming more public about their opposition and supporting a kinder solution.

“Thanks to our Better Wool Guide, Australian shoppers who choose to buy wool products can more easily make a kinder choice for lambs at the checkout —whether they’re adding to their wardrobes or sourcing items for their home.”

Increasingly, brands and retailer groups are setting time-bound commitments to phase out mulesed wool, verified through robust certification schemes such as the Responsible Wool Standard (RWS), ZQ Merino, and NATIVA.

“With so many brands ditching mulesed wool by 2025 or 2030, it is a strong market signal that the days of mulesing lambs are numbered. It’s time to protect sheep from flystrike by breeding plain bodied flocks that don’t attract flies. And the sooner we see legislation in place to fast-track this progress, the better for both the welfare of lambs and the Australian wool industry’s reputation,” Dolphin said.