Wyoming’s Mountain Meadow Wool Mill supports sheep growers and local tastes | TSLN.com
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Wyoming’s Mountain Meadow Wool Mill supports sheep growers and local tastes

Wyoming is well known for the large bands of sheep that graze the mountains and plains of the cowboy state. Surrounded by that culture, Karen Hostetler and Valerie Spanos were surprised to find it was difficult to purchase products made from Wyoming wool.

“We were also concerned about the loss of this way of life with many of the sheep ranches closing down, so in 2002 we embarked on a journey to solve some of these challenges,” Karen says. In 2007, the pair opened the doors to the Mountain Meadow Wool Mill in Buffalo, WY – a full service mill with a family of dedicated employees and friends.

“Our mission was to create a company that sustains ranching, and we are working very hard toward that goal,” Karen says. “What we are trying to do is market Wyoming wool products. Before we opened, it was very difficult to find yarn that we knew came from Wyoming. We ended up taking a bale of wool, having it made into yarn and marketing it. It was selling really well, but it was taking too long to get it made into yarn.”

Valerie and Karen made the decision to form a partnership and start their own mill where they can process the raw wool themselves. “We thought it would be neat to have someplace to have yarn made that was closer to the producer,” Karen explains. “That is where this idea came from.

“Basically, what we do here is work directly with the producers,” she continues. “We have about seven or eight growers we work with, and when the wool is made into yarn and sold, we pay the producer. So, they actually own the yarn until it’s sold.”

Wyoming is well known for the large bands of sheep that graze the mountains and plains of the cowboy state. Surrounded by that culture, Karen Hostetler and Valerie Spanos were surprised to find it was difficult to purchase products made from Wyoming wool.

“We were also concerned about the loss of this way of life with many of the sheep ranches closing down, so in 2002 we embarked on a journey to solve some of these challenges,” Karen says. In 2007, the pair opened the doors to the Mountain Meadow Wool Mill in Buffalo, WY – a full service mill with a family of dedicated employees and friends.

“Our mission was to create a company that sustains ranching, and we are working very hard toward that goal,” Karen says. “What we are trying to do is market Wyoming wool products. Before we opened, it was very difficult to find yarn that we knew came from Wyoming. We ended up taking a bale of wool, having it made into yarn and marketing it. It was selling really well, but it was taking too long to get it made into yarn.”

Valerie and Karen made the decision to form a partnership and start their own mill where they can process the raw wool themselves. “We thought it would be neat to have someplace to have yarn made that was closer to the producer,” Karen explains. “That is where this idea came from.

“Basically, what we do here is work directly with the producers,” she continues. “We have about seven or eight growers we work with, and when the wool is made into yarn and sold, we pay the producer. So, they actually own the yarn until it’s sold.”

Wyoming is well known for the large bands of sheep that graze the mountains and plains of the cowboy state. Surrounded by that culture, Karen Hostetler and Valerie Spanos were surprised to find it was difficult to purchase products made from Wyoming wool.

“We were also concerned about the loss of this way of life with many of the sheep ranches closing down, so in 2002 we embarked on a journey to solve some of these challenges,” Karen says. In 2007, the pair opened the doors to the Mountain Meadow Wool Mill in Buffalo, WY – a full service mill with a family of dedicated employees and friends.

“Our mission was to create a company that sustains ranching, and we are working very hard toward that goal,” Karen says. “What we are trying to do is market Wyoming wool products. Before we opened, it was very difficult to find yarn that we knew came from Wyoming. We ended up taking a bale of wool, having it made into yarn and marketing it. It was selling really well, but it was taking too long to get it made into yarn.”

Valerie and Karen made the decision to form a partnership and start their own mill where they can process the raw wool themselves. “We thought it would be neat to have someplace to have yarn made that was closer to the producer,” Karen explains. “That is where this idea came from.

“Basically, what we do here is work directly with the producers,” she continues. “We have about seven or eight growers we work with, and when the wool is made into yarn and sold, we pay the producer. So, they actually own the yarn until it’s sold.”

Wyoming is well known for the large bands of sheep that graze the mountains and plains of the cowboy state. Surrounded by that culture, Karen Hostetler and Valerie Spanos were surprised to find it was difficult to purchase products made from Wyoming wool.

“We were also concerned about the loss of this way of life with many of the sheep ranches closing down, so in 2002 we embarked on a journey to solve some of these challenges,” Karen says. In 2007, the pair opened the doors to the Mountain Meadow Wool Mill in Buffalo, WY – a full service mill with a family of dedicated employees and friends.

“Our mission was to create a company that sustains ranching, and we are working very hard toward that goal,” Karen says. “What we are trying to do is market Wyoming wool products. Before we opened, it was very difficult to find yarn that we knew came from Wyoming. We ended up taking a bale of wool, having it made into yarn and marketing it. It was selling really well, but it was taking too long to get it made into yarn.”

Valerie and Karen made the decision to form a partnership and start their own mill where they can process the raw wool themselves. “We thought it would be neat to have someplace to have yarn made that was closer to the producer,” Karen explains. “That is where this idea came from.

“Basically, what we do here is work directly with the producers,” she continues. “We have about seven or eight growers we work with, and when the wool is made into yarn and sold, we pay the producer. So, they actually own the yarn until it’s sold.”

editor’s note: to learn more, contact mountain meadow wool at 307-684-5775 or http://mountainmeadowwool.com.


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