A National Institute for Forest Products Innovation centre will be established in Gippsland, Victoria, announced the state’s Minister for Agriculture Jaclyn Symes. Officially the Gippsland Centre of the National Institute for Forest Products Innovation (NIFPI), it will be the third centre established, joining other centres in Launceston and Mount Gambier.
The centre, a collaboration between the Victorian Government and the Commonwealth, will open later this year as part of the Victorian Forestry Plan to increase research and development opportunities to diversify the sector. In addition, the centre will assist the industry to transition from native timber harvesting to plantation timber by complementing future business grants under the Victorian Timber Innovation Fund.
Research done by NIFPI centres has helped plantations reduce stock loss by better understanding the influence of time taken to dry timber, and also resulted in new sawing and gluing techniques. The new centre will also allow the Victorian Government to support the timber industry and secure future jobs.
“Establishing the Gippsland Centre of the National Institute for Forest Products Innovation sends a clear message that the Victorian Government is supporting the future of our local timber industry by driving innovation,” said Symes. “This forestry innovation hub will encourage ingenuity as the sector transitions from native timber harvesting to plantation timber, ensuring regional jobs in the years to come and delivering positive outcomes for Gippsland.”