Wood is as important as food
From New Zealand Tree grower August 2018
Tenco is one of New Zealand’s largest exporters of forest products. We have built to this position since 1991 when the company was set up to export lumber to growing Asian export markets. Experience and reputation count; from small beginnings Tenco has become the largest independent exporter of New Zealand lumber and New Zealand’s 4th largest log exporter. Tenco has a regular shipping program of their own log vessels and in combination with these and other ships currently calls at 7 New Zealand ports (5 North Island and 2 South Island).
Tenco buys standing forests. Tenco currently has a number of forests which they purchased at harvestable age to log over a number of years for export and domestic markets. Tenco also regularly buys smaller tracts of forest to harvest immediately or immature forests to hold until harvest time. Tenco is interested in broadening the base of owners from whom it purchases forests and stands of trees. A deal with Tenco is a certain transaction. The owner and Tenco will agree on a value of the tree crop and then Tenco will pay this amount to the owner either in a lump sum amount or on rate per volume unit out-turn from the forest depending on the nature of the tree crop.
Tenco knows there are a lot of farmers who have trees that are close or ready to harvest and will be asking themselves how they should proceed with the sale of their trees. For some farmers the kind of certain transaction with money in the bank could well be appealing. Tenco is actively interested in buying harvestable forests or trees from areas including all the North Island (except the Gisborne and East Coast districts) and Nelson & Marlborough in the South Island .
If you own a forest in this area (16 years and older) and are ready to enter into this kind of agreement Tenco is interested to develop something with you.
Please contact: Josh.Bannan@tenco.co.nz
Work: +64 7 357 5356 Mobile: +64 21 921 595 www.tenco.co.nz
For over 60 years I have had to defend a common criticism of forestry that ‘forests including plantations are occupying land which should be used for food production’. It is claimed that New Zealand needs land to grow food for an ever-increasing global population. The implication is that growing food is more important than wood production. In 1980 I wrote a paper in the NZ Journal of Forestry which challenged this view. Since then I have read almost all global resource studies. All, except the Brundtland report of the World Commission on Environment and Development in 1987, completely ignore wood even though most them claim that they cover all products.
The 1987 Brundtland report is significant because, although it says little about the world’s need for industrial wood, it addresses the world’s need for fuelwood.
For example, a quote from chapter one:
Millions of people in the developing world are short of fuelwood, the main domestic energy of half of humanity, and their numbers are growing.The wood-poor nations must organise their agricultural sectors to produce large amounts of wood and other plant fuels.
And there is a most insightful quote on forest economics in chapter two:
...income from forestry operations is conventionally measured in terms of the value of timber and other products extracted, minus the costs of extraction. The costs of regenerating the forest are not taken into account, unless money is actually spent on such work. Thus, figuring profits from logging rarely takes full account of the losses in future revenue incurred through degradation of the forest.
Yet, as I claimed in my 1980 paper, the world used more wood than any major food item or construction material. The world still uses a great deal of wood. For the year 2016 the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations reported that the world wood harvest was 3.74 million cubic metres, with almost a 50:50 split between fuelwood and industrial wood.
As wood is often measured in the green undried state, assuming one metre cube weighs one tonne overstates the relative importance of wood. To compare with agricultural products the wood total has been reduced assuming that dry wood weighs only 450 kilograms per cubic metre.
The following tables and graph compare wood with the annual harvest of the four major food products. Most of these, especially maize and wheat, we do not consume directly – they are food for chickens, cattle and pigs. Even with the generous reduction in the weight of wood the world uses more wood than maize, the most significant agricultural product. The world needs wood as much as it needs food.
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