Despite fires, ample supplies are available, writes Claire Bennett from Tasmanian Timber.

Tasmanian timber is a product of exceptional beauty from a place like nowhere else. Our small island grows more than you ever imagined. Our timber has been around for millennia and available as a commercial timber product for over a century. And our sustainable forest management practices ensure that it is available both now and into the future.

Following the Tasmanian fires, there has been some concern around the availability of Tasmanian timber. Merchants and customers can relax: availability is unchanged. The processors of Tasmanian timber assure the marketplace that when it comes to supplying timber, it’s business as usual.

Stocked up

The state’s dry processing facilities were not affected by the fires and McKay Timber, Porta, Neville Smith Forest Products, Oak Timber, Britton Timbers, Hydrowood, and Tassie Thick Veneers are all operating at normal capacity.

Tasmanian oak, blackwood, myrtle and celery top pine continue to be available in normal volumes across Australia.

Shawn Britton, Director of Britton Timbers and Chairman of the Tasmanian Timber Campaign, says that typically Tasmanian mills would hold 18 months of stock in their drying yards at any given time.

“We are always prepared to cope with fluctuations in both the supply of the resource and the demand from the marketplace of quality Tasmanian timbers,” Britton says.

“One of the industry’s greatest strengths is its capacity to hold large amounts of stock to balance short-term issues.”

Britton Timbers has been operating for 111 years, and Britton himself says that longevity in this sector requires businesses to have strategies in place to cope with impacts on the natural resource.

“None of the Tasmanian processors are expecting to have their production volume adversely affected, it’s business as usual,” he says.

Expert timber helpline

Anyone interested in specifying Tasmanian Timber can utilise the free expert timber helpline operated by the Centre for Sustainable Architecture with Wood (CSAW) at the University of Tasmania.

This free-call service is available to anyone specifying timber and provides support in choosing the right timber for the right application, obtaining quotes from suppliers, and troubleshooting any problems throughout a project. Requests for quotes will be sent to all relevant suppliers of the requested product.

Suppliers to the Tasmanian Timber campaign are all certified sustainable, hold Chain of Custody certification and are independently audited under a strict Quality Assurance Program.

Call the Expert Helpline on 1300 041 766 or visit

Beautiful timbers

Buying certified locally grown timber is the best choice for sustainability and to create a smaller carbon footprint. When you buy local, the timber is from a nearby forest and not being transported across the world.

Australian designer-maker Jon Goulder exclusively uses Tasmanian Timber.

“I think as architects, designers and furniture makers become more responsible; the trend will be to use local product,” says Goulder.

“Tasmanian timbers are most definitely at the top of what Australia has to offer. We’ve got access to the most beautiful timbers in the world. They provide me with the palette I need, from dark chocolate to blond and everything in between.

“To exclusively use Tasmanian timber is a no brainer for me.”