The Victorian Forest Products Association (VFPA) welcomes the announcement of three grant programs under the Victorian Forestry Plan to support timber communities and innovation, VFPA Chief Executive Officer Deb Kerr said today.
Minister for Agriculture Gayle Tierney announced the opening of three grant programs worth nearly $25 million, the majority of which is used for community grants. Just $3 million is directed towards mills that are being asked to exit the use of native timber – timber that 68% of voters in a recent VFPA poll backed access to and use of in the future.
This election, VFPA is asking the incoming government to overturn its decision to phase out native forestry by 2030, to implement active forest management for improved ecological outcomes and to recover timber from both forest management and landscape fire management activities.
“Trees are a renewable resource right at our doorstep. We appreciate the investment and support of the Victorian Government to foster innovation and support businesses,” Ms Kerr said.
“However, we keep asking the same question: if native hardwood isn’t coming from Victoria anymore, where will it come from? We are calling on the incoming government to continue investing in the ultimate native hardwood renewable grown in Victoria, reach self-sufficiency in wood products – and consider the alternative,” Deb Kerr concluded.