The government has created a website to make up-to-date forestry information more accessible to the sector and to encourage investment.
The website, called Canopy, is tailored to farmers, iwi and other forestry interests, says Forestry Minister Stuart Nash.
“Canopy is a centralised online channel that aims to be the ‘go-to site’ for the most up-to-date guidance on forestry, as an investment,” says Minister Nash.
“Forestry will be a key part of our climate change response. It also offers huge potential for regional development, Māori economic aspirations, local jobs and training, and diversifying income streams in rural communities. Forestry is our third largest primary exporter by value so it’s important we keep driving development of the sector.
“The Forest Service and the industry recognise that many people, businesses, farmers, investors and iwi involved in forestry need to find credible information in an accessible format, in order to make the best decisions for their circumstances.”
Research and resources
Canopy provides a breakdown of what people in the sector need to know at each stage of the forestry process: from planning, establishment and management to harvest and the market.
The website has a library of resources, including how to manage native species and data on the cost of harvest for small-scale growers.
Featured research includes a study called Growing Native Seedlings at Scale and More Sustainability, which looks at ways to ramp up seedling production so a greater amount of affordable plants of a consistent standard are supplied to the market.
Alternative growing methods are being tested through a series of experiments, including research into paper plant pots as an alternative to plastic.
The study has found that using paper pots has significant benefits beyond reducing plastic use, including faster root development and no “transplant shock” when the tree is planted.
Also, the study found that paper pots make for more efficient planting, as there is no need to remove the plant from its container before putting the tree in the ground.
More to come
Minister Nash says more information is coming to Canopy.
“Work is already underway to develop the next stage of the website, which will provide specific guidance for Māori landowners, information about regional and national events, training opportunities, and case studies and real-life examples of people and experts.”
Canopy has been developed by Te Uru Rākau – the NZ Forest Service alongside industry partners. It can be found at: www.canopy.govt.nz