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The Green, Wooly Mission of the Green Mountain Spinnery

Founded over 40 years ago to support the local wool economy and process yarn with environmentally responsible principles, The Green Mountain Spinnery’s work has never been more timely.

Sandi Rosner Feb 19, 2024 - 7 min read

The Green, Wooly Mission of the Green Mountain Spinnery Primary Image

The Green Mountain Spinnery in Putney, Vermont. Photos courtesy of the Green Mountain Spinnery

In 1981, the Green Mountain Spinnery was founded in Putney, Vermont, with a lofty three-part goal: to create yarns of the highest quality, to help sustain regional sheep farming, and to develop environmentally sound ways to process natural fibers. Housed in a building that began life as a gas station and operating with vintage equipment, the Spinnery has stayed true to that original goal while becoming an integral part of the farm-to-fiber community.

Where it Began

The idea for the Green Mountain Spinnery was kindled in the mid-1970s in a Macro-Analysis study group, in which concerned people gathered to consider big, global issues and think about how local action could have an impact. (For more information about the Macro-Analysis movement, visit START.) Three of the four founders of the Spinnery were participants in this group. They decided to address the lack of a local facility for small-scale wool processing.

There were plenty of sheep in the area, and the back-to-the-land movement had resulted in increased interest in raising sheep, but there was no access to local processing and spinning. The wool was being sold for pennies to be used for things such as mattress stuffing. They thought they could do better.

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