Friday, 03 July 2020 11:44

Bunnings banning Oz timber “pandering to extremist groups”

Written by  Staff Reporters
Australian Forests Products Association CEO Ross Hampton. Australian Forests Products Association CEO Ross Hampton.

Bunnings’ decision to no longer sell timber from an Australian state-owned forestry agency that breached conservation laws is being criticised.

VicForests was found in May to have had breached conservation laws related to threatened species by the Australian federal court.

Bunnings says it has a zero-tolerance approach to illegally logged timber and it is committed to only sourcing timber products from legal and well-managed forest operations.

As a result, the company ceased sourcing of VicForests timber from June 30.

Australian Forests Products Association CEO Ross Hampton has described the decision as a “knee-jerk reaction to pander to extremist activist groups”.

Hampton said it will only lead to more imported timber from less sustainably managed forests overseas.

“This decision puts at risk tens of thousands of Australian manufacturing jobs at a time when our country can least afford to lose them, especially in regional communities,” said Hampton.

“The truth is that Victoria has one of the most regulated, sustainably managed native forestry industries in the world, harvesting the equivalent of just four trees out of 10,000.”

Australia’s Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries, Jonno Duniam, called the decision “disappointing and wrong” and said Australian jobs will be lost as a consequence.

“Bunnings shelves will be stacked with more imported timber, rather than Australian grown structural hardwood timber, Australian solid timber panels and Australian kitchen benchtops,” said Duniam.

“This decision will cost many hundreds of jobs across harvesting, sawmills and processing, particularly in our regional communities.

“Bunnings is kicking Australia’s timber industry while it’s down, and at a time when Australian companies and Australians should be backing Australian products and supporting Australian jobs.”

More like this

We're all in it together!

OPINION: Hill Country farmers and foresters have common concerns about regulations and climate change.

Make forestry sector accountable!

OPINION: Towns and cities downstream of large forestry blocks are at high risk of infrastructure damage – costing billions – when major flooding occurs.

Seed banking alone not enough

New research led by a University of Canterbury academic has identified that conventional seed banking alone isn’t enough to conserve all of New Zealand’s endemic plants.

FTA good for Aussies and for us – Groser

ANYTHING GOOD for Australia is in the long run good for New Zealand. That’s the reaction of Trade Minister Tim Groser to the news that Australia has signed a free trade agreement with China, and to speculation that their FTA with China is better than NZ’s, especially regarding dairy products.

Record profit for Victorian farmers

Dairy farmers in the Australian state of Victoria had a record profitable 2022-23 season, thanks to high milk prices and carefully managed high costs.

Featured

National

UAE FTA welcome news

The dairy and red meat sectors have welcomed news that New Zealand will begin formal negotiations for a free trade…

Flock House and its secrets

Plans are in place to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the legendary Flock House opening its doors for the first…

$160 billion cargo shipment deal

New Zealand’s major primary industry exporters have secured shipping capability to export $160 billion worth of products over the next…

Machinery & Products

More horsepower for Puma

Case IH's introduction of AFS Connect, an option for its high horsepower tractor ranges, has now been rolled out across…

EU tractor sales hit the brakes

According to numbers sourced from national authorities, 151,800 tractors were registered across Europe in 2023, of which 26,200 tractors (17%)…

GPS in control

In a move that will make harvesting operations easier, particularly in odd-shaped paddocks, Kuhn has announced that GPS section control…

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

True colours

OPINION: The watermelon party (AKA the Greens) try to portray themselves as an upright, self-righteous, caring bunch of woke, bicycle-riding…

Peace at last?

OPINION: Good news for hunters as Forest & Bird have "paused" legal action against the Fiordland Wapiti Foundation and agreed…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter