His­tory in the mak­ing... FSC na­tive cer­ti­fied wood­chip ex­ports

Australian Forests and Timber - - IN THE NEWS -

IN AN his­toric first for Tas­ma­nia, the ini­tial ship­ment of some 50,000 tonnes of For­est Stew­ard­ship Coun­cil/FM cer­ti­fied wood­chips is set for ex­port at the Bell Bay op­er­a­tions of Neville Smith SmartFi­bre in March 2017.

The SmartFi­bre PureFor­est prod­uct, de­vel­oped by Neville Smith SmartFi­bre in con­junc­tion with SFM, is an FSC/FM cer­ti­fied high qual­ity wood prod­uct sourced from pri­vate grow­ers in na­tive for­est.

As a re­sult of in­creas­ing con­fi­dence in the in­dus­try, Neville Smith SmartFi­bre has an­nounced a $3 mil­lion in­vest­ment in its Bell Bay op­er­a­tions, which has seen some $1.5 mil­lion in­vested up­grad­ing its chip­per, trans­fer­ring power from diesel to elec­tric as well as $1.5 mil­lion in stock­pile ex­pan­sion in the very near fu­ture.

SmartFi­bre’s Chair­man, James Neville Smith said the in­vest­ment would lead to five di­rect jobs and an es­ti­mated flow-on eco­nomic im­pact of a fur­ther 25 jobs and mil­lions of ex­tra dol­lars spent in the lo­cal econ­omy.

“While an ini­tial an­nual vol­ume of some 200,000 tonnes of wood­chip is fore­cast, it is hoped that this would in­crease to 400,000 tonnes of FSC/FM cer­ti­fied wood­chips for ex­port each year,” Mr Neville Smith said.

“We have had strong mar­ket de­mand for our SmartFi­bre PureFor­est prod­uct and in­di­ca­tions are the de­mand is long term.”

Mr Neville Smith said given the strong de­mand, he was call­ing on landown­ers who may be in­ter­ested in sup­ply­ing SmartFi­bre PureFor­est to con­tact the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

“At this stage SmartFi­bre PureFor­est is sourced only from pri­vate landown­ers, so we ap­peal to those who are in­ter­ested in sus­tain­able forests to con­tact us,” Mr Neville Smith said.

Mr Neville Smith said it was im­por­tant for the com­mu­nity to un­der­stand the for­est in­dus­try had come a long way in re­cent years and the an­nounce­ment of full FSC cer­ti­fied wood­chip ex­ports re­flects this.

“SmartFi­bre was the first in Tas­ma­nia to achieve FSC Con­trolled wood in 2007 and achieve a long term con­tract with a prom­i­nent cus­tomer, and was al­ways mind­ful of a nat­u­ral re­source be­com­ing avail­able with a higher cer­ti­fi­ca­tion badge for the fu­ture,” Mr Neville Smith said.

“That fu­ture has ar­rived and pri­vate land own­ers who have had their forests stag­nate for many years now have the op­por­tu­nity to har­vest in a sus­tain­able method un­der the SFM, FSC/ FM cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.

“SmartFi­bre now have a long term com­mit­ment from a cus­tomer and in­ter­est in SmartFi­bre PureFor­est is grow­ing.

“We hope all sup­port­ers of FSC ap­plaud this devel­op­ment and en­cour­age broader FSC cer­ti­fi­ca­tion on both plan­ta­tions and nat­u­ral for­est ar­eas. This is the gold stan­dard call by the ENGO’s so we would ex­pect this fact to be recog­nised by these or­gan­i­sa­tions.

“As a com­pany we are al­ways try­ing to dif­fer­en­ti­ate. We strive to waste noth­ing and add as much value as pos­si­ble wher­ever pos­si­ble to our prod­ucts, from qual­ity Sawn Tas­ma­nian Oak tim­ber to branded “SmartFi­bre PureFor­est” high qual­ity wood­chips. “In this con­text, the de­ci­sion by the State Gov­ern­ment to re­struc­ture Forestry Tas­ma­nia is wel­comed, be­cause in get­ting the core or­gan­i­sa­tion that sup­plies most of the vol­ume onto a sus­tain­able foot­ing, the rest of the in­dus­try can get on with the job.

“At the end of the day, al­low­ing in­dus­try to val­ueadd wood prod­uct will mean more jobs and in­vest­ment in Tas­ma­nia. This, cou­pled with a sus­tain­able foot­ing, will mean a great fu­ture for us all,” Mr Neville Smith said.

“At this stage SmartFi­bre PureFor­est is sourced only from pri­vate landown­ers, so we ap­peal to those who are in­ter­ested in sus­tain­able forests to con­tact us,”

James Neville Smith and the new chip­per.

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