New technology developed in Scandinavia is being used to make high quality veneers in the Pacific.
The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research saw potential for high returns for Pacific island producers using the system.
The centre's chief executive Andrew Campbell said the technology, using a spindle less lathe, could be used on coconut palms which have stopped producing fruit.
"So it is a lathe that can use small diameter timbers, like old coconut palms - of which there are way too many in the Pacific - that are senescent or in poor condition, and you can turn them into a very attractive fine veneer that then can be used for furniture products or attractive timber panelling or whatever."
Professor Campbell said the technology is already being used in Vanuatu and Fiji.