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Latest timber industry news, updated Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Forestry innovation research grants open

The Australian and Tasmanian governments are supporting advances in a sustainable and productive forestry industry with wood product innovation they hope will grow the sector. Source: Timberbiz Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Senator Anne Ruston, and Tasmanian
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VAFI dinner a premier pre-election event

The Victorian Association of Forest Industries Annual Dinner will be held on 19 October at the RACV Club, Melbourne. Source: Timberbiz One of the premier events for the state’s forest and wood products industry and of particular significance with 2018 being a state election year, the
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Landmark Australian genetic technology boosts tropical eucalyptus plantations

Australia-based forestry company New Forests will use landmark Australian genetic technology to boost productivity in its tropical eucalyptus plantations. By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz New Forests has forged a partnership with Gondwana Genomics, a private company founded in 2014 wit
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Housing growth continues and Victoria leads the way

Australia’s housing approvals surged in March, rising 9.2% compared with February, totalling 19,452 separate approvals. While the monthly data was positive, the big stories are that free-standing house approvals are still growing and Victoria’s approvals remain at record levels. Sourc
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Mt Gambier research hub up and running

The new National Institute of Forest Products Innovation has kicked into gear in South Australia, with an inaugural meeting of its industry-driven advisory committee electing Tammy Auld as Chair and planning a workshop to discuss the research priorities and strategy with all intereste
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National Farmers Federation on a mission to investigate farm forestry

Representatives from the Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) and the National Farmers Federation (NFF), including AFPA Chair Greg McCormack and NFF President Fiona Simson visited New Zealand to examine farm forestry operations near Rotorua. Source: Timberbiz The joint delega
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Top 5: Market Points from IndustryEdge

513,811 bdmt – projected woodchip exports from Australia in April 2018, measured in bone dry metric tonnes, based on IndustryEdge’s unique vessel tracking and analysis -$23.03/m3 – the February 2018 discount for softwood log exports that were <15 cm diameter. Their exports averaged
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Next generation forest plantation investment

Institutional investors, superannuation funds and trusts are a likely source of funds for a new venture by universities and industry that aims to establish tree plantations to meet Australia’s growing demand for wood. Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The immediate focus is on Gippsland an
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Concerted push for contract extensions

The Victorian Association of Forest Industries (VAFI), has thrown its support behind its members’ drive to extend their contracts with VicForests, the state government’s commercial forestry arm. From Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz Tim Johnston, the chief executive of VAFI said processor
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G6 increase pressure on Vic Government

Six Gippsland sawmills have renewed pressure on the Victorian Government, urging Premier Daniel Andrews in an Open Letter to save jobs, protect regional communities and return confidence to the timber industry. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The G6, as the new group calls itself
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Top 5: Market Points from IndustryEdge

448,686m3 – Australia’s log exports in February 2018, dominated by 403,136m3 of softwood logs AUD14.895 million – the value of dressed sawn softwood imports to New South Wales in February 2018, on a free-on-board basis 12.4% – growth in the value of timber windows imported to Australi
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South Gippsland votes against timber harvesting

VicForests said that it respected the sentiments of South Gippsland Shire Council, that voted against native timber harvesting in Mirboo North.  “We urge the Council and the community to continue talking with us,” Alex Messina, VicForests General Manager Corporate Affairs said.  “Ther
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Softwood chip prices up 21% in February

Australia’s woodchip exports totalled 580,785 bone dry metric tonnes (bdmt) in February 2018, with hardwood chips at 494,345 (bdmt). Softwood chips continued their recent strength, totalling 86,440 bdmt. Source: IndustryEdge, Timberbiz Latest data analysed for the Australian industry
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Security of supply

Landscape-scale forest planning and security of supply are key demands of the Victorian forestry industry for the next generation of the 20-year regional forest agreements (RFAs). By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz All five Victorian RFAs, which are to be finalised by March 2020, must re
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RFAs finally signed for Victoria

Victoria’s forest industry jobs and the environment have been assured certainty with the Australian and Victorian governments extending the Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs) for East Gippsland, Central Highlands and the North-East regions. Source: Timberbiz The extension of the three
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Gippsland Forestry Expo linking forestry education and careers

Australia’s forestry industry is finding it difficult to attract qualified or experienced people to work in this interesting and rewarding sector. Source: Timberbiz This is despite the fact that Australia’s forest industry is a dynamic and sustainable provider of regional employment,
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Big Buddy Bike

Last year we heard about the Draisine 200.0, a one-off wooden electric balance bike for adults. Well, if you wished that you could buy something like it, now is your chance. Source: New Atlas The Slovenian-made Big Buddy Bike has a tempered wooden frame, it’s adult-sized, and it
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EU and Laos forest law enforcement talks

The European Union (EU) and Laos have held their second round of face-to-face‑negotiations on a Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT). Sources: Timberbiz, EU FLEGT The talks took place in the Lao capital Vientiane from 4-7 June 2
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The Timber Tax Bombshell for Britain

The UK timber industry faces a potential “Billion Pound Brexit Bill” if Britain leaves the EU Customs Union, the Timber Trade Federation (TTF) said in a statement. Source: Timberbiz “Some 90% of timber used in construction is imported from Europe, which British timber supplies are ins
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No high-tech tools to help NZ forest farmers

Recent comments by officials and “experts” in New Zealand on planting one billion trees, the plight of hill country forestry and woody debris flows, have not touched on the total lack of decision support tools so that farmers and other local forest investors can make the right decisio
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Dollar benefits of softwood plantations in NSW

New research has detailed the millions of dollars and thousands of jobs generated by softwood plantations in the NSW South West Slopes and Central Tablelands. Source: Timberbiz The softwood plantation industry in the South West Slopes contributed $1.05 billion in direct sales in 2015-
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Innovative journey drives innovative use of technology

Last year Hyne Timber was approved by the Queensland Government to proceed to the detailed design stage of an engineered timber Fire and Emergency Services Complex (QFES Complex) in Maryborough. Source: Timberiz While this Market Led Proposal to design and build the facility continues
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Grow a building in an hour? Yes, we can!

In just one hour, Australian softwood plantations can grow enough timber to create a nine-storey building’s worth of engineered timber, according to calculations by FWPA’s Mid-rise Advisory Program. Source: Timberiz The Program estimates that more than one million hectares of Australi
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Robots

The use of robots or autonomous machines will definitely pay a big role in forest operations in the future, driven by the need for safety and higher productivity, according to a New Zealand researcher. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz Professor Rien Visser, from the School of Fore
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AFPA backs Labor’s forestry plan

The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) has welcomed Federal Labor’s commitment, that should it be elected, a Labor Government will deliver “a comprehensive strategic plan” for the forest sector. Source: Timberbiz Labor’s agriculture spokesperson the Hon Joel Fitzgibbon made
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