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Wood Matters

Clarky's Comment - September, To Prune or Not to Prune?

Most will be aware how weakness in the China construction market has resulted in sharply lower prices for industrial grade export logs from NZ and Australia. At the same time pruned log markets, both export and domestic have held up well. The result is a widening price differential between pruned and unpruned logs.

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Log Market - September

Forest owners and many other industry participants are lamenting the increased volatility of the log market this year. Already, with still a quarter of the year to run, the export log market has had two significant downturns. This plays havoc with planning and contractor livelihoods. It also begs the question of how New Zealand Inc. can build a viable, well-trained and well-equipped infrastructure to harvest the additional 10-15 million m3/annum of logs available over the next 10 or so years.

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Lifting environmental performance in operations

Following on from the successful and well-established Safety Champions initiative, PF Olsen is sponsoring development of an Environmental Advocate role within contract crews that operate heavy machinery. Environmental Advocates will focus on ensuring that the environmental aspects of the crew's operations are being managed appropriately. This will be supported by training, communication resources and mentoring.

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Research into herbicides provides insights

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In New Zealand’s plantation forest sector, the use of herbicides is a well-established practice to allow young seedlings the chance to grow in the face of competition from the aggressive, introduced weeds and in some areas, native shrub hardwood regeneration. Although the amounts used are very low over the life of a tree crop, chemical herbicide use worldwide is a concern to many.

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Customer satisfaction survey shows improving trend

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To continually improve service levels, PF Olsen seeks written feedback from customers in the form of a satisfaction survey. This is sent to customers at the completion of jobs. It is heartening to find that the 2015 consolidated results shows an increase in response rate and an overall increase in satisfaction levels.

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Forestry and the Emissions Trading Scheme - September

Released in August by the NZ Environmental Protection Agency is the 2014 Facts and Figures report summarising actions of the Emissions Trading Scheme for the period 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2014, as well as the longer annual report under section 89 and section 178A of the Climate Change Response Act 2002 for the period 1 July 2014 to 30 June 2015. These reports are released each year allowing comparisons to be made.

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What's New in Research - September 2015

Last week we finally signed a seven year contract with Government for the new Specialty Wood Products (SWP) partnership which will focus on Douglas-fir, Cypress species and a range of eucalypt species.

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Wood Matters Becomes Good Enough to Eat

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When Irma Van Wyk said that she likes to bake cookies, no-one expected what was coming next. Irma's day job is, Administration Assistant at PF Olsen Australia's Western Office - Albany. Her other passion is artisan baking and creating custom cookies under the brand Bickie Blessings.

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New Website and Wood Matters

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This month Wood Matters launches our new-look Wood Matters and redesigned Website. This is a complete rebuild - new software, new content, new pics. Come take a look!

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Log Market - August

Export log market weakness replaces nascent recovery. Optimism of a continuation of reducing log inventories and firming prices in China has given way to stubbornly high log stocks, price weakness and muted demand.

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Log Price Outlook - August

SCION produced a log price outlook in February and again in May. This outlook was based on a summary of combined views from a range of people inside New Zealand and abroad.

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Radio safety message campaign

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From June to August, PF Olsen is running safety messages on local radio stations to remind forest workers of key safety messages whilst going to work and returning home.

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Helping to get the right equipment for the job

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Innovative equipment matched to site produces optimum harvesting result. In an unusual move, forest manager PF Olsen has stepped in to help one of its contractors with the purchase of a yarder to harvest in woodlots around the central North Island.

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Local community and PF Olsen help injured kea

"The kea population is pretty active at Ligar Bay and quite simply part of the harvesting crew on any given morning," points out Brendan. Working with the KCT, the big take home message for us is that whilst kea seem so abundant and healthy, they are in fact nationally endangered. They're pretty unique birds that are battling and I don’t think NZers understand this".

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