Spreading the word on alternative tree speciesPrimary Industries
Associate Primary Industries Minister Jo Goodhew has announced that a project which aims to provide information for growers on alternative tree species has been approved for a Sustainable Farming Fund (SFF) grant.
“The project will focus specifically on cypresses and eucalypts. Both species groups have been successfully grown here on a wide range of site types for many years, but on a limited scale,” says Mrs Goodhew.
“When grown well, both cypresses and eucalypts produce high-value timber with a wide range of possible uses. They have a valuable role in soil conservation, improving water quality, providing shade and shelter, and increasing biodiversity.”
New Zealand has around 1.6 million hectares of radiata pine, compared to 22,000 hectares of eucalypts and just 10,100 hectares of cypresses.
“New Zealand Farm Forestry Association Cypress and Eucalypt Action Groups identified there was a shortage of basic information about these species, and applied to the fund to help spread the word,” says Mrs Goodhew.
The project will receive $23,500 to produce and disseminate short, farm forester-led videos, complemented by downloadable web-based information, giving best-practice advice on growing, harvesting and utilising these species.
“This Government is committed to helping the primary sector double the value of its exports by 2025. Achieving the Export Double for forestry and wood processing, transforming it into a $12 billion sector, will require a higher proportion of value-add products,” says Mrs Goodhew.
“I encourage the forestry sector to take advantage of the SFF and come forward with projects that will deliver benefits to New Zealand's forestry sector.”