The Need for Innovation
This research venture relied on a business model in which forest management strategies were guided by the new industrial needs while respecting sustainability principles. It covered all activities of the hardwood industry, which are forest resources, harvesting as well as processing and markets. Considering the strategic importance of sawmilling in the wood manufacturing industry, the hardwood initiative mainly focused on this business sector.
This initiative proposed a global approach in which all elements were linked and grouped under seven activity sectors: Markets, User Need Analysis, Manufacturing Process Analysis, Sawmill Supply Needs, Harvesting Control, Harvesting Performance, and Economic and Silvicultural Opportunities.
Developing new approaches, in the forest as well as at the mill, will ensure better use of available wood while growing and improving the hardwood forests for future generations.
Program Direction and Guidance
The program was directed by a Steering Committee that included industry and government representatives. Quarterly progress review meetings were held and quarterly and year-end reports were distributed.
Members of the Steering Committee were:
This 4-year intensive research initiative had a global budget of 4.0 million dollars and was generously supported by the provinces of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec and by Natural Resources Canada though the Transformative Technologies Program. The research investment was also supplemented by in-kind contributions from the Eastern Canadian hardwood lumber industry.