Sawn Softwood Production Leaps 9.8% Year to June 2014
Responding to increased demand driven by new dwelling construction and alterations and additions, sawn softwood production in Australia rose 9.8% in 2013-14, compared with the prior year.
The chart below, drawn direct from the FWPA dashboard, shows the last two financial years of data, for each of eleven clearly defined grades.
Analysis of the underlying data shows that untreated structural timber <120 remains by far the major grade, accounting for 33.0% of all softwood production. Compared with the prior year, its production increased just over 5.0% in 2013-14.
Other grades saw much larger movements over the year. This included the main treated grade H2F which grew by 20.7%. Packaging also grew at a similar rate and was up 19.9% for the period.
Packaging grade is often sourced from the lower quality sections of logs and as such the increase may in part reflect an overall increase in sawnwood production.
The grade that grew most in 2013-14, was Fencing, which put on 42.5%, likely driven by growing housing stock .
On the flipside, Appearance grade softwoods slumped a massive 70.3% over the same period and at the other end of the value chain, production of Poles fell 56.3%. Those two changes, though both are small in volume, may indicate a shift of production to the growing housing market.
The data, compiled from the voluntary Softwood Timber Survey is dependent upon respondent data, but has recently been checked and enjoys an ever-increasing level of accuracy
Of all the data currently on the FWPA dashboard, the sawn softwood survey is the most detailed. It supplies the most recent month’s production with more than 80% of national sawn softwood production included and it breaks down into eleven key grades. Each of the grades is defined and can be individually analysed.
Click here to go straight to the FWPA dashboard.