Pan sector workshop aims to transform the forestry value chain

MEDIA RELEASE - 27 November 2013

Getting significantly more out of the forestry and wood products value chain will keep international and national experts fully occupied for two days next week.

The Trans-Pacific Forestry Value Chain Workshop, hosted by Scion, has attracted several speakers from Canada and Australia who also will be rolling up their sleeves to participate in the workshop.

Scion’s General Manager Sustainable Design Dr Trevor Stuthridge says the workshop is a nationally important step to increase understanding of value-chain thinking throughout our forestry and wood processing sector.

“The exciting future for the wood sector underpins Scion’s vision of Prosperity from Trees, and is aligned with Government’s economic growth agenda and the forest industry’s target of $12 billion in export earnings by 2022. With the expected large increase in wood harvest in the next 10 years the New Zealand forestry sector has a unique opportunity to double its contribution to national GDP.

“This workshop brings together key thought leaders to focus on creating value from forestry in an increasing Pacific- and Asia-centric era,” said Dr Stuthridge.

Interest is emerging internationally from the forestry and wood processing sectors to examine current business models and maximise efficiency with better understanding and collaboration, sharing product information along the value chain and creating consumer pull rather than production push.

Where supply chains focus on moving a product or service from supplier to customer, value chains focus on adding improvements or enhancements along the sequence of activities that deliver a product or service through market demand.

“In effect, it’s about building a value chain that has strategic alignment at all stages and is sustainable in competing with other materials that are replacing the traditional role of wood,” said Dr Stuthridge.

“The speakers we have bought to the workshop bring their experiences of value-chain strategies and case studies, and at the end of the two days we intend to have agreed a Value Chain Research Action Plan.”

The significant role of Maori in the forestry value chain transformation will be highlighted by Graham Pryor, Chairman Te Mana o Ngati Rangitihi trust. International speakers at the workshop include Dr Luc Lebel from the University of Quebec and Director of research consortium FOR@C; Jean Favreau, Research Manager at FPInnovations, Montreal; Dr Chris Gaston, Senior Scientist at FPInnovations and Associate Professor, University of British Columbia; Dr Laurie Bonney from the University of Tasmania; and Dr Mauricio Acuna, Australian Forest Operations Research Alliance (AFORA). They will be joined by New Zealand speakers from other primary industry sectors.

The workshop will be held at Scion, Rotorua, from 2-3 December 2013. Close to 50 people are registered, and further registrations are welcome.