10 Sep 2010

Training essential, says forestry education body

5:16 pm on 10 September 2010

The forest and wood industry training organisation says its courses have achieved some spectacular results in lifting production, quality and safety standards.

Ten training awards were presented on Thursday night to people and companies involved in wood harvesting and processing and furniture making.

They include a large manufacturing plant in Kawerau in which every one of its more than 300 staff are involved in training.

Tokoroa wood processing company Pedersen Holdings Roundwood division won two of the awards.

The plant, which processes poles and other roundwood products, has almost all of its 30 employees involved in training, on health and safety courses as well as various log processing and management courses.

The manager, Kevin Davies, says no training courses were available until about four years ago, and they have made a huge difference to production, the working environment and staff morale at the plant.

FITEC chief executive Ian Boyd says training is an essential component of the sector that's become one of the country's largest export earners.