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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 62



The efforts of colonists sixteen years ago to establish this industry having resulted in much serious loss and disappointment, the manufacture was abandoned by all but a few enthusiasts, and shipments fell off to slender proportions. As the public attention has been much directed to the improvement of this industry, a table of the exports since 1872 may be instructive:—
Year. Tons. Value. Year. Tons. Value
£ £
1873 6454 143,799 1881 1307 26.285
1874 2039 37,690 1882 2039 41,955
1875 639 11,742 1883 2013 36,761
1876 897 18,285 1884 1624 24,500
1877 1053 18,826 1885 1063 16,316
1878 623 10,666 1886 1112 15,922
1879 445 7,874 1887 1595 25,094
1880 894 15,617 1888 4279 76,919

A new impetus was given to this trade by the scarcity of Manila hemp in the European and American markets, and consequent advance in the prices. This was quickly followed by large orders received in New Zealand from the United States, for binder-twine purposes. These have page 13 gone on increasing, so that the exports for the first half of the current year are larger than any whole year since 1883, viz. 6,025 tons, of the value of 132,821l., and there is every reason to believe that the demand will strengthen as the quality becomes better known and appreciated. Since the adoption of twine for binding up has become so general, considerable trade has been done in the colony in the manufacture of fibre into twine, resulting so favourably that it seems hardly reasonable to continue to import twine that can be as well made here.