While our textile industry is small, New Zealand is recognised as a leader in several areas. We’re the world’s largest producer and exporter of cross-bred wool and produce the world’s finest merino wool.

Careers information

The textile sector is made up of about 200 businesses that employ over 3,500 workers. It supports an indirect industry and workforce of many more thousands of people.

What kind of jobs could I do?

Most of the textile industry’s work involves producing woollen fabrics and products (e.g. wool scouring, yarn spinning and carpet manufacturing). The industry produces a smaller range of other natural fibre and synthetic textiles too. 

Jobs include:

Plus there are opportunities to work in the types of roles that are common to all manufacturing processes (e.g. quality control, production management).

How could I get into the industry?

You can join from school, with NCEA passes, or move into the industry from another manufacturing industry.

Does this sound like you?

Study areas

• Sciences or Workshop Technology


• Confident communicator

• Good at precision work

Helpful experience

• Analysing, researching or problem solving

• Working with machinery

Preferred work environments

• Inside (workshop or plant)

How much could I earn?

Icn Money

0 - 2 years experience

$20k - $65k

How we support your industry

We partner with industry associations like the Textile Care Federation and members of your industry to help build skilled employees. This support includes promoting careers in your industry, identifying potential learners, and encouraging work placements.

We also ensure your industry’s qualifications continue to meet needs, support industry events like conferences and regularly celebrate your learners’ success.

National qualifications

There are a wide range of qualifications at different levels and with different strands (options). These qualifications and strands cater to people entering the textile industry or wanting to build their skills in specialised areas of textile manufacturing.