South Australians are encouraged to think about our state’s phenomenal forest industries as they prepare for this year’s Christmas, Chief Executive Officer of the South Australian Forest Products Association (SAFPA) Nathan Paine said today.
“Whether it is the pine tree in the corner, the wrapping paper for the presents, the paper label on the bottle of wine or the food on the table that has been moved around the country on a wooden pallet, South Australia’s forestry, timber manufacturing and pulp and paper industries are all key cogs, essential to the food and fibre supply chain that help make Christmas Day so special.
Whilst it may not be front of mind, our forest industries are essential to how we live and have an impact on almost every part of our lives and in the future. Our industries also increasingly have a critical innovation role making climate friendly replacement products as the world looks to phase out plastics and fossil-fuel based products,” Nathan Paine said.
“That is why this year, SAFPA on behalf of the over 21,300 South Australian’s, who either directly or indirectly work in the forest industries, is gifting every Member of Parliament a Southern Blue Gum seedling – to shine a light on this critical part of the industry that grows the trees that are so vital to almost every part of our lives. An industry that #BuildsTheNation.
“As an industry, we look forward to working with all Members of Parliament to grow our production estate, playing our part in achieving the national goal of planting one billion new trees by 2030, thereby ensuring our timber and wood fibre supply for decades to come. Global demand for timber and wood fibre is forecast to quadruple by 2050 so we need to make sure supply meets growing demand at home and across the nation,” Nathan Paine concluded.
Key facts about Southern Blue Gum
• Southern Blue Gum aka Eucalyptus Globulus or E. Globulus, is a hardwood plantation tree which is different to a softwood plantation tree such as Pinus Radiata.
• The Blue Gum is a short rotation plantation tree and harvested after 10-15 years which compares to a long rotation of around 30 years for the Pinus Radiata.
• At harvest, the trees are chipped and turned into pulp unlike softwood which is processed into timber frames, posts and poles and compost amongst other products.
• As a result of genetic selection and perfect environmental conditions, Australian Blue Gum chip is some of the highest quality fibre available in the world. Asian and South American chip is generally considered inferior and often blended with Australian chip.
• The Blue Gum provide high-quality fibre which is processed to meet our paper and packaging needs – from the paper in your printer to the paper bags at the supermarket, cardboard boxes for our medicines and TVs, the disposable coffee cups and paper straws at the local café all the way to the masks that kept us safe during COVID and now and into the future, the biochemicals that will replace plastics and other fossil fuel-based products.