This piece was written by FTMA’s Kat Welsh.

Fabricators – Be on the Lookout

The Engineered Wood Products Association of Australia (EWPAA) last month published a report into the growing number of non-conforming wood still getting a foothold in the Australian market. The report, Non-Conforming Timber Products Update 2024, highlights the detrimental impact when safety standards are compromised by wood products not meeting Australian standards and codes, and how this influences the reputation of the industry.

Mr. Gavin Matthew, Chief Executive Officer of EWPAA, in a media release acknowledged that “while the majority of industry and the market was doing the right thing, a concerning amount of timber products that do not meet the requirements set out in standards and the National Construction Code was still entering the Australian supply chain.”

Australia has to rely on a proportion of imported timber and wood products to meet the demand of the industry, much of which is meeting standards and comes with appropriate certification, however some is still invading the market that is not. The impact of this negates safety standards, and when found out has the ability to damage not just that business, but the sector.

It is everyone’s responsibility to be aware, look out for any products not conforming, and report them. The EWPAA report also gives concise details on identifying conforming LVLs, as well as supporting sustainable forestry. Conflict timber is also outlined.

The flow on from using materials that aren’t meeting standards is multifaceted – ensuring what you use complies, most importantly, is key to safety standards. When using a material that does not meet safety standards, everyone that comes into contact with the product is put at risk.

It is 100% essential for the Australian market to be using timber or EWPs that come with forestry certification.  The impact of not using certified products from sustainable forestry, can be devastating. Unregulated logging leads to deforestation, loss of habitats, and the disruption of communities that depend on forests for their livelihood. Taking action is simple but crucial. Always choose certified timber and EWPs to ensure you are supporting sustainable forestry practices. By making this choice, you contribute to the preservation of forests and the well-being of our environment and communities for future forestry.

Complying with safety standards, sustainable forestry, and all levels of regulations, is something that FTMA takes very seriously, and cannot iterate enough. We fully stand by our members to conform with codes, legislations, and requirements. Our reputation as an association is pivotal on members doing the right thing. We urge all fabricators to read this report, and if you have issues with suspect EWPs or timber, report it. Ignorance is not bliss.

To read EWPAA’s Non-Conforming Timber Products Update 2024 in full, click here.

If you need to report non-conforming timber or building products, click here for assistance.

Any questions or concerns please call Kersten Gentle on 0418 226 242

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