Industry News

New CIRIA handbook promotes responsible sourcing across Construction Industry

The Construction Industry Research and Information Association (CIRIA) has recently produced its responsible sourcing handbook.

The publication - Minimising risk through responsible sourcing (C767) - is designed to help anyone involved in construction projects to better understand what to look for when making purchasing decisions.

By providing best practises and guidance on responsible sourcing practices and risks reduction, the handbook aims to answer to key-questions such as:

- Where do the materials and products used in construction projects come from?

- What are their social, environmental and ethical impacts?

- Do construction companies and professionals consider them in purchasing decisions?

"Adopting responsible sourcing practices is the key to act on these issues and to manage potential risks and impacts associated with the purchase of materials, products and services, such as child labour, excessive use of resources, or greenhouse gas emissions," says CIRIA in a news release.

"With an economy based on global networks and supply chains this can be very challenging and requires a close collaboration between all the parties involved in project delivery, from clients to designers and specifiers, through to suppliers and product manufacturers."

"The construction industry is increasingly realising this and we are witnessing the evolution of the market and changes in procurement processes: clients and contractors are keen to work with organisations that can demonstrate they are adopting responsible sourcing practices; at the same time, manufacturers and suppliers are seeking third party certification to demonstrate their supply chain transparency and, ultimately, increase their ability to win more work."

Find out more information here.

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/new-ciria-handbook-promotes-responsible-sourcing-across-construction-industry]

TTF launches "Timber You Can Trust Campaign" to promote responsible timber sourcing

The Timber Trade Federation (TTF) has recently launched a new Campaign - ‘Timber you can Trust’ - for the purpose of promoting responsible timber sourcing to local authorities and Industry stakeholders.

"As councils across the UK commit to build new homes in increasing numbers, the need for sustainably sourced construction materials has also grown," explains the TTF in a news release. "The TTF wants to partner with local authorities to ensure that high standards of responsible sourcing are maintained in local government and in procurement policies across the private sector."

Launching the campaign, David Hopkins, TTF’s Managing Director, said: “I’m excited to be working with local government to increase awareness about the importance of responsible timber sourcing, the good management of forests, and the sustainability of the whole timber supply chain.”

“Timber is the world’s leading renewable, low carbon construction material. Responsible procurement is at the heart of a low-carbon future." 

“We’ve just seen hundreds of new councillors elected across the country, a lot of whom have come with ambitions of encouraging new sustainable housing developments across their communities. Similarly, through the CTI and the Timber Industries APPG, we will be seeking to work with MPs across the UK”.

The TTF is inviting its members and stakeholders to committ to the ‘Timber you can Trust’ campaign by taking the TTF pledge and completing a free timber-procurement CPD course.

Many stakeholders have already pledged their support for the initiative, including architects, contractors, builders’ merchants and many others. View the photo gallery here.

To join the campaign on social media, use the hashtag #trustedtimber.

Find out more here.

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/ttf-launches-timber-you-can-trust-campaign-promote-responsible-timber-sourcing]

BMF comments on Queen's Speech: "Positive engagement on trade and housing"

The Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) has commented today’s Queen’s Speech to Parliament that set out the Government’s legislative programme for the next two year.

John Newcomb, BMF Managing Director, said:“The Queen’s Speech reflects the Government’s pre-occupation with the complex negotiations to leave the European Union but we do welcome the very encouraging noises today on housing and industrial policy, which will both help grow the economy, improve living standards and increase productivity”.

“We welcome the clear statement in the Queen’s Speech that proposals will be brought forward to help ensure more homes are built. The Government has acknowledged that not enough homes are being built and that we need to build more of the right homes in the right places, and diversify who builds homes. Our understanding is that the Housing White Paper does not now require further legislation, so we would urge the Government to implement it as quickly as possible”.

“The BMF also welcomes the Government’s commitment to implementing the Industrial Strategy and the new Trade and Customs Bills which will enable our members to trade confidently and continue with their planned investments. The BMF favours an Industrial Strategy that showcases the construction industry, based on a clearly-defined, well-articulated mission to give it purpose, drive and direction. A resilient, functioning and enduring supply chain must be a core component if the Strategy is to succeed”.

“Our latest Builders Merchant Building Index shows that merchants experienced strong growth in the first quarter of 2017, with sales up 5.9% compared to the same time last year. This shows the vital role of builders, plumbers and timber merchants in delivering economic growth. Housing is not built, nor are homes repaired, extended or adapted, without the materials and products that BMF members deliver. We look forward to working with new ministers in the coming months”.

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/bmf-comments-queens-speech-positive-engagement-trade-and-housing]

WRI report: Global timber trade rose 10% in 2016. US, China and UK top 3 importing countries

According to Wood Resources International (WRI), 118 million m3 of timber was traded last year resulting in +10 percent compared to 2015.

Imports to the US account for about one-third of globally traded timber and have almost doubled in five years. China accounted for about 17% of import volumes in 2016, followed by the United Kingdom, Japan and Germany.
 
The biggest declines in imports globally from 2015 to 2016 were to the MENA region, where demand for timber fell in all the major markets, including Egypt, Algeria, Saudi Arabia and Morocco.

Moreover, early 2017 showed an upward trend for global softwood timber market with prices in North America hitting a 13-year high, while Chinese import prices increasing 13% in 18 months.

WRI report also presents an insight on macro-areas:

  • North America
    Timber production in North America in 2016 was up six percent from the previous year, reaching its highest level since 2007. The biggest rises in production occurred in the US South and Eastern Canada, while the increases in western Canada and the western US were more modest.

    Prices for timber in the US have jumped during the first four months of the year to hit a 13-year high in April. Many of the commonly traded grades surged in price by more than 20% from April of 2016.
  • Northern Europe
    Sweden exported 12.9 million m3 of softwood timber in 2016, which was the highest volume exported since 2006. The increase from 2015 was a modest 1.5%, with shipments to Denmark, Japan, China and France rising the most.

    Domestic timber prices in both Finland and Sweden continue to be close to their lowest levels in ten years in US dollar terms, as reported in the Wood Resource Quarterly.
  • China
    Prices for imported softwood timber to China have been in a steady upward trend during 2016 and 2017 with the average import price in March 2017 being 13% higher than 18 months earlier.

    The biggest change in pricing over the past two year has been that prices for Russian timber are no longer substantially cheaper than those for timber from other supplying regions, but instead are rather close to the average import price.
  • Japan
    Total housing starts were up 3.2% in Japan in the 1Q/17 as compared to the same quarter in 2016, and the economic outlook for the coming year is slightly more optimistic than that for last year.

    Prices for domestic and imported timber have remained practically unchanged for almost a year in Yen terms. With the Yen strengthening against the US dollar during the first four months of 2017, timber prices have increased so far this year in US dollar terms.
  • Russia
    After a substantial decline in softwood timber export prices during 2014 and 2015, Russian timber prices have trended upward for most of 2016 and early 2017. Average export prices in March 2017 were 12% higher than in the same month last year, and prices for wood going to China have gone up even faster over the same time-period.

    Export volumes to China in the 1Q/17 were unchanged from the previous quarter, holding steady at the second highest level on record.

 The complete WRI report can be purchased here.

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/wri-report-global-timber-trade-rose-10-2016-us-china-and-uk-top-3-importing-countries]

BWF publishes new action plan to keep on growing Woodworking sector

The British Woodworking Federation (BWF) has published an action plan which spells out its priorities for 2017/18 and reviews the key achievements of the past 12 months.

Through the plan, the BWF aims to keep on growing the market for wood products, developing a well-equipped workforce, and influencing change in the new political environment.

In details, the Federation committed to help members meet the challenges of the new skills landscape and manage all accidents out of their businesses through the Health & Safety Hero Campaign.

Other priorities for the year ahead include driving new business to members and championing high standards for UK joinery through the BWF’s Code of Conduct and the schemes: the Wood Window Alliance, BWF Certifire Fire Door & Doorset Scheme and the BWF Stair Scheme.

Sean Parnaby, BWF President and Managing Director of West Port Timber Windows & Doors said: “We have seen a huge amount of change since the last plan was published, and I am delighted to see that many of the ambitious tasks set out there have been accomplished."

“There are plenty of reasons to be optimistic. We are seeing new competition emerging, reshaping the industry and driving us onwards. As the number one information point on woodworking matters, the BWF has never been more successful in providing clear guidance to members, designers, specifiers and increasingly to the general public, through initiatives such as Fire Door Safety Week and BWF Stair Scheme Manager Hannah Mansell’s recent appearance on the BBC’s Jeremy Vine show."

“The BWF is keeping its members ahead of the curve on emerging areas such as materials health and life cycle analysis with additional resources set to be launched over the next few months."


Mr Parnaby also mentioned the efforts undertaken by the BWF - alongside partner organisations such as the Timber Trade Federation, the Structural Timber Association and the Builders Merchants Federation - to grow the entire UK timber supply chain through the CTI. “The UK joinery industry has a stronger voice now than ever before, and BWF will be redoubling its efforts with the wider supply chain through the Confederation of Timber Industries to fight for the economy we need for our businesses to prosper.”

To read the full BWF Action Plan 2017/18, click here.

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/bwf-publishes-new-action-plan-keep-growing-woodworking-sector]

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