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Farm Forestry Timbers 

Specialty Timbers Newsletter 13, December 2017

Farm Forestry Timbers are an industry body representing the interests of specialty timber producers and users in New Zealand. We support locally produced timbers going into local markets for quality products. We represent all facets of industry – membership ranges from growers right through to designers and users of timber.

Farm Forestry Timbers Society

Eric Cairns
04 526 7929

Dean Satchell

Richard Thompson

Newsletter editor:
Dean Satchell

Eric Cairns


Vaughan Kearns

Malcolm Mackenzie
07 873 7728

Graham Smith
07 872 2853

George Shallcrass
03 578 8596

Alan Coyle
027 276 4252

In this newsletter:


FSC certification has been an ongoing aspirational goal for the Farm Forestry Association to deliver to growers. It has always been just out of reach because of the costs and complications required to become certified, even if part of a group scheme.

NZFFA are on the cusp of setting up a group scheme for smallholders to become certified under, but are waiting for the national standards to become finalised, which set the rules. These rules have undergone an evolution, one that I am hoping will make certification viable for smaller growers. Certainly in the FSC General Assembly held in October this year there were a number of remits seeking to address the lack of smallgrower participation in the scheme and make it viable for growers to participate.

One of the approaches up for discussion was a novel approach to certification of woodlots less than 100 hectares, whereby site-level indicators are verified at point of harvest while other more onerous FSC principles are assessed regionally. This would make it easier to establish conditions under which to claim responsible forest management that is not excessively onerous to the small forest grower.

NZFFA will continue to work on creating a viable scheme for growers to certify their small woodlots. However, meanwhile I have heard from a processor belonging to this group that they missed out on a substantial supply contract because their locally sourced plantation hardwood was not FSC certified and their buyer, who produces products for Harvey Norman, required certification. The buyer resorted to timber harvested from natural rainforests overseas because that was certified. Pretty sad that our local plantation grower and processor miss out to the overseas corporates who have the expensive piece of paper that gets them into the exclusive "green-sustainable" market.

Dean Satchell
Chair, FFT

If you have a story for this newsletter, please get in touch with Dean by email.


Draft Standards out for public submission

I represent industry on both of these standards committees and the drafts are finally out for public comment. These are two of the most important standards for the timber industry and relate to durability.

I ask all members to carefully scrutinise these standards and either approach me with any issues you have or alternatively participate in preparing our submission. I will be working hard on our submission in the early new year and comments will be gratefully recieved for incorporating into this.

Draft revision to NZS 3602:2003 Timber and wood based products for use in buildings

Standards New Zealand and the P3602 committee are seeking feedback on the draft revision to NZS 3602:2003 Timber and wood based products for use in buildings.

NZS 3602 sets out specifications for timber and wood-based products that are required to ensure specific building components are sufficiently durable to function for a specified intended life. This standard was published in 2003 and has not been revised since then. NZS 3602 is a core resource for a wide range of people in the building industry, complementing the design and construction methods and details set out for timber-framed buildings in NZS 3604 and for other timber structures designed using DR NZS AS 1720.1:20XX Timber structures1. 

This revision of NZS 3602 addresses requirements for the preservation of timber framing that have changed since the 2003 edition. The draft also incorporates some amendments specified in New Zealand Building Code (NZBC) Acceptable Solution B2/AS1. Other modifications to NZS 3602 are in response to changes in material design, types, and selection, to incorporate new knowledge, and to extend the range of situations where specific naturally durable species can be used.

DZ 3602:2017 »

Closing date for comments 02/03/2018. You can submit comments from the Standards New Zealand website »


Draft revision to NZS 3640:2003 Chemical preservation of timber and wood based products

NZS 3640:2003 Chemical preservation of round and sawn timber was published in 2003 and set out the requirements for chemical preservative treatment to provide protection from decay and insects, including marine borers. The standard describes the hazard classification for service and biological hazard and also provides timber identification requirements.

NZS 3640 has been amended five times since it was first published. This latest revision to the standard reflects changes in industry practice, new treatments, additional wood products, and non-biocidal treatments.

DZ 3640:2018 »

Closing date for comments 09/03/2018. You can submit comments from the Standards New Zealand website »

Dean Satchell



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Disclaimer: While every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided on this site, Farm Forestry Timbers Society do not accept liability for any consequences arising from reliance on the information published. If readers have any doubts about acting on any articles they should seek confirming, professional advice.

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