Monthly Archives: April 2018

Softwood growers seek sector review

SWANpine

https://www.bdtimes.com.au/?news%2Fbusselton-dunsborough-times%2Fsoftwood-growers-seek-sector-review-ng-b88817681z

WOW!!

This must be the first time in my 40 year career as a forester that I’ve heard farm foresters openly complaining about Government control of forestry markets in Australia.

This is a unique event.

Hopefully this is the beginning of the major reform of the forest industry that is so desperately needed in Australia.

We really need to keep this discussion going.

And it’s not just about softwood prices.

It’s also about native forest log prices, and markets, transparency and competition.

It’s also about Government forest policy which is firmly focused on subsidising sawmills, and not about profitable tree growers.

This is true right around Australia!

I wish the WA farmers luck in their discussions with the State Government.

Even if you don’t succeed initially, keep the discussion going. Keep the campaign alive.

The fact that here we have farmers wanting to grow trees for wood production and yet we have Government policy directly hindering their efforts is beyond madness.

GOOD LUCK!

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The Australian International Timber and Woodworking Festival

Otherwise known as Wood Dust.

wooddust

https://www.wooddustaustralia.com/

Now this is ambition.

I wrote recently how I thought New Zealand needed a national wood festival to take their already successful forest industry to the next level.

Well it seems Australia is looking to go one better with an international wood festival, which is extraordinary given the parlous state of our forest industry.

I’ve also written recently about wood-based festivals in the 21st century that fail to recognise where the wood comes from and who grows it:

https://blackwoodgrowers.com.au/2018/02/13/all-about-the-wood-nothing-about-the-growers/

And finally I wrote recently about the Maleny Wood Expo in Queensland that is a much better example of what a 21st century wood festival should be like:

https://blackwoodgrowers.com.au/2018/02/19/maleny-wood-expo/

Every single wood-based festival in the 21st century should:

  • Demonstrate concern for where the wood comes from (is it sustainable and not just certified); and
  • Encourage and support profitable private tree growers.

The Maleny Wood Expo does this by having clearly defined mission and objectives.

The Expo aims to promote the whole ‘timber’ story – from seed collection through planting forests, harvesting and milling to the end product, the furniture.

The Maleny Wood Expo comes from a landcare base, whilst Wood Dust comes from a wood craft base, and the difference in attitude is immediately apparent.

Don’t get me wrong.

I think Australia desperately needs a major wood festival to help rebuild our battered forest industry, but on a proper basis. Encourage profitable private tree growing. No wood from public native forests.

Wood Dust is on October 17 – 21, 2018 in Bungendore and Queanbeyan, NSW, Australia.

Tickets are available online.

So whilst this year’s Wood Dust Festival falls well short of what I regard a modern wood festival should be I hope it is a great success and can grow to include the “whole timber story”.