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Exciting New Logistics Initiative Provides $20/JAS m³ Cost Saving

Options for marketing logs in the wider Auckland and Northern Waikato regions have always been somewhat limited. The closure of CHH's structural sawmill at Kopu hasn't helped the situation and higher log transport costs have reduced forest owner returns for logs exported via the Port of Tauranga. That's why the commencement of containerised log export via Ports of Auckland presents such a great opportunity for forest owners in that area.

As featured in last month's Wood Matters, log export in containers (Logs in Boxes) is not only resulting in higher returns through lower freight costs, it is also opening up new logistics channels. Ports of Auckland do not have the space or facilities to handle break-bulk log export. Some research, however, revealed that it was feasible to receive and stow logs into containers at an off-port site and then transport the containers back to Ports of Auckland for shipping. Ports of Auckland is the largest import-port in NZ and handles the greatest number of in-bound containers. This means that container back-loading is very welcome with cost-competitive containers readily available. In contrast, we understand that the big growth in container log trade and limited in-bound container movements at Port of Tauranga is making it increasingly difficult to access containers for log exports there.

Pacific Forest Products have been first off the mark with this new initiative, setting up a log yard in Otahuhu, South Auckland. PF Olsen commenced supplying them with logs in August.

Waytemore Forests Limited is a long-term PF Olsen harvesting client. This is what they have to say about this new initiative.

In August export logs from our Hunua-located forests started going to a log yard at Otahuhu for export in containers via Ports of Auckland. Previously they went to Port of Tauranga. PF Olsen has worked with log exporters to establish this new logistics initiative and reduce transport distance by over 100kms, providing a cost saving of some $20/JAS m³. Since we are getting the same log sales price at Otahuhu, that saving will flow straight onto our bottom line. Excellent work PF Olsen, we are really looking forward to our next harvesting cheque."

Vicki Manchester, Chief Financial Officer, Waytemore Investments Ltd

This is great opportunity for forest owners with mature forests of woodlots in the Auckland and Northern Waikato regions. PF Olsen is currently putting together a harvesting schedule to enable forest owners to capitalise on this opportunity. To get on this schedule, please phone Craig Fisher on 0274 955 853, or 0805 PFOlsen (0508 736 5736) or email us on info@pfolsen.com.