Latest updates

See the latest updates below or view past FICA e-newsletters to see updates, tips, profiles, industry news and more. 

Back to Blog

Pan Sector Group Update

You may recall that as a result of the ‘Reality Check’ meeting lead by FICA in July 2023 that a Pan Sector Group (NZ Forest & Wood Sector Forum, NZFWSF) was formed.The group includes representatives from accross the industry including forest owners, farm forestry, wood processing, Maori forestry, energy, transport and more. The purpose of the group is to speak as one voice to the Government and other stakeholders to promote the interests of the forest industry.One of the undertakings at ...

June 7, 2024

FICA Administration Change

Over the past two months Sarah Davis has been assisting FICA in an administration capacity. FICA would like to welcome Vicki Thompson to the team. Vicki will be providing part-time contracted administration support approximately 20 hours per month, usually on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Vicki is based in Bay of Plenty but will work remotely and will be contactable on the same email address admin@fica.org.We want to also thank Sarah for her assistance during the transition and we're looki...

June 7, 2024

DC Equipment – Madill launch and a little surprise

On 31 May to celebrate the manufacturing debut of Madill log loaders in New Zealand, special guests were invited to DC HQ in Tasman. FICA board members Nathan Taylor (Mechanised Cable Harvesting, MCH) and Steven Yeoman (Volcanic Plateau Logging) attended the event on behalf of FICA.The event also set the scene of what’s to come for DC Equipment's journey with Madill, with the surprise unveiling of the Madill RFM 1100 (remote felling machine) prototype.Dale Ewers is the founder and owner o...

June 7, 2024

FICA Members present at Wood Transport and Logistics Conference

FICA members Mike Hurring (Josh Hurring) and G White Logging (Dave Adams) presented at this years’ conference. Josh’s presentation was on running NZ’s first Logset diesel-electric hybrid harvester in their operations in Central Otago.Dave’s presentation was on running an all-wheel drive log transporter (Modified Astra 8X8’s) in challenging environments.It is good to see FICA members at the forefront of innovation, thanks to Innovatek for providing the opportunity for Dave and Josh...

June 7, 2024

Yarder Guarding

The Technical Advisory Group (TAG) that has worked on the yarder BPGs has decided to publish an unendorsed WorkSafe copy of the BPGs. In the background WorkSafe will continue to review the BPG’s and modify so at some future date a new version can be released that is endorsed by WorkSafe. This should not reduce the effectiveness of the BPGs. There are other examples of BPGs already out there, for example the Steep Slope Harvesting BPGs, that are also not WorkSafe endorsed but that still wo...

June 7, 2024

WorkSafe Strategy Release

The WorkSafe strategy was officially launched mid-May. Some points of note:WorkSafe is committed to work with the forest industry to update the approved code of practice. This is good news for the industry and FICA is intimately involved in this process.The forest industry is identified as one of four industries the strategy is targeted at, in particular with regard to acute harm. The key risks being vehicles and machinery, falls from heights, falling and moving objects, electrical and chem...

June 7, 2024

Excavator Guarding Guidance

Some of you may have received communications from enthusiastic machinery and parts suppliers/salesmen stating that:  ‘Worksafe is making all forestry machines mandatory to have hand rails installed to the AS 5327 requirements.’ Worksafe have confirmed to FICA that hand/guard rails are not mandatory, the link below provides guidance....

June 7, 2024

FICA E-newsletter - June 2024

In our latest FICA update, we're covering:Market Update Excavator Guarding WorkSafe Strategy ReleaseYarder Guarding Immigration Settings FGR Risk and Benefit WorkshopWood Transport and Logistics Conference Wrapup DC Equipment - Madill Launch Women in Forestry and FICA working together NZ Forest and Wood Sector Forum...

June 7, 2024

FICA signs agreement with Women in Forestry to provide combined member value

FICA and Women in Forestry (WIF) have signed an agreement to work closer together, share resources and increase member value for forestry contractors.WIF is a grassroots network of women working in the New Zealand forestry industry, that focuses on supporting female business owners. Started informally in the 2010's, WIF has grown to offer more tailored, formalised support in recent years.As part of the agreement, FICA will provide baseline funding to WIF to work on complimentary projects fo...

May 28, 2024

Calling all NZ loader operators – be part of this study

Driven by mechanisation, traditional career pathways in forestry crews are evolving. As part of the Primary Growth Partnership (PGP) programme, ‘Te Mahi Ngahere i te Ao Hurihuri – Forestry Work in the Modern Age’, the Scion Human Factors research group is exploring ways to reshape these pathways to empower operators in their learning process and bolster well-being.Video-based feedback can help improve operator performance by offering specific, timely, and content-rich instru...

May 13, 2024

Immigration NZ Roundup

Immigration NZ has released a summary of recent key operational and policy updates about the immigration system. Please note this is not an exhaustive list of updates. For more information about any of the updates below, please visit the relevant page on Immigration New Zealand’s (INZ’s) website.You can also check out our announcements, media releases, stories, and common topics on our News Centre on the INZ website....

May 13, 2024

FICA E-newsletter - May 2024

It looks like the export market correction has now reached the bottom, hopefully we now see some stabilisation and improvement in coming months.  Unfortunately, there are no changes in the market fundamentals (demand) that would indicate that we will see significant improvement in log prices this month.At current levels ($98-$108/Jas m3 NI and $94-$104/Jas m3 SI) Forest owners’ stumpages will remain squeezed and production will remain constrained, particularly in the Woodlot segment.The c...

May 9, 2024

WorkSafe Notifications and what they mean

In our recent catch-ups with WorkSafe, we have been discussing Contractors’ rights when dealing with WorkSafe. Here is some additional information around different times of communication from WorkSafe and what is expected in terms of compliance.VERBAL DIRECTIONAn onsite direction given by an inspector, informing the duty holder that they are not compliant with a provision of the Act or Regulation. It is not a legislative tool therefore is only used where the risk ...

May 6, 2024

MSD Support

If you’re a contractor and don’t have any new work to go to, you may be able to help your staff by working with WINZ/MSD to either find them work in other industries, subsidise them into different roles, or at the very least help them fast track accessing benefits. Although this may not be the ideal outcome contractors are pursuing or wanting, it may be a back-up plan to help employees. The MSD team may be able to help you retrain and keep your st...

May 5, 2024

FICA E-newsletter - April 2024

I officially started in my roles as FICA CEO on 2 April 2024. I want to take this opportunity to thank Prue Younger for all the hard work she has done for FICA. FICA is a well-respected industry association and has a seat at the table in many places that make key decisions affecting our industry, our members and sponsors. It has been a busy few weeks visiting a number of major sponsors, being involved in meetings on industry training, hauler guarding, visiting specialist forestry accou...

April 12, 2024

Changes to the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV)

Many of you may be aware of the changes to the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) | Immigration New Zealand announced last weekend.Immigration NZ is extending an invite to FICA Members to attend a webinar about these changes. We have also included some extra information below about the English test requirement and what FICA is working on in response....

April 11, 2024

FICA E-newsletter - March 2024

Well, the time has come to say good-bye! My last few weeks are on count down and a busy hand over to my successor Rowan Struthers who will be great to take FICA on to the next stage of its life. I have already been interviewed by the NZ Logger and my last column awaits you all this month in the mail so I won't go over the same ground. Finding something else to reflect on is easy as I am truly not leaving this job dissatisfied, more elated that I have been able to lift it to a good level of ...

March 6, 2024

Rowan Struthers announced as new Forest Industry Contractors Association CEO

FICA has announced the appointment of Rowan Struthers as its new CEO. An experienced professional who has worked across the forestry sector in various roles including senior leadership and forest management, Rowan will take over the job from departing CEO Prue Younger who finishes up in March.Having graduated from Canterbury University Forestry School, Rowan Struthers has over 30 years of experience working in forestry. He has worked in most facets of the industry including silviculture, woodflo...

February 8, 2024

FICA E-newsletter - Jan Feb 2024

This is the first newsletter for 2024 and I trust this finds you all back at work, relaxed and rested and ready to hit 2024 head on!It is a bit scary as there is just one more newsletter to go before I step down from my role with FICA. As this first month of the year has almost disappeared, the year looks set to roll on quickly. I am pleased to say those I have spoken to in the industry have already had a good start, eased back into it and safety starts are all done and dusted without a hitch.I ...

January 25, 2024

FICA E-Newsletter - December 2023

As the last newsletter of 2023 I could not help but reflect on where we are as of today and maybe what lies ahead for a better year in 2024.As it happens, I had to give a brief overview of the industry at our Food and Fibre CoVE earlier in the week and this is how it went. From the political world around us, we had experienced delays prior to elections as around about July Government agencies fell quiet. The election came and went, and we can see another 3 or 4 months with delays as the coa...

December 7, 2023

New Government Agreements and 100 Day Action Plan

Its official, New Zealand has a new Government. Here you'll find the agreement documents between the National Party, NZ First and Act, as well as the new Governments 100 day action plan. ...

December 6, 2023

Contract Tree Faller Guide

This is a new protocol / guideline for forestry contractors to use before / when engaging a contract tree faller to work. It is widely accepted that tree falling is a high risk activity. With the increase in mechanisation, and reduced level of manual falling available, the use of contract fallers has increased.There is no set standard when engaging a contract tree faller so this document provides a standard guideline to mitigate business risk and any safety concerns when engaging in this type of...

December 4, 2023

Forestry and wood processing sector briefing to incoming ministers 2023

There are many reasons why the government should be a strong supporter of the forest and wood processing sector. Such support will generate huge benefits for Aotearoa New Zealand.The forestry and wood processing sector’s Briefing to Incoming Ministers (BIM) is calling for a strategic approach that acknowledges the significance of the forestry sector’s contribution to the economy, and the environment, including climate change mitigat...

November 29, 2023

FICA E-Newsletter November 2023

The thought of just 6 weeks to Xmas is a slight panic given what's in the diary to complete before then. But, as always, we'll tick off a project at a time and we'll get there. I think everyone is looking to wave the end of 2023 off and get on with a new year, refreshed and prepared, as resilient as we are to move ahead with a positive spring.As we await the incoming government to finalise ministers and policies, it's still business as usual or still a halt on progress in some government agencie...

November 9, 2023

Prue Younger to retire as FICA CEO in March 2024

After six years at the helm, Forest Industry Contractors Association CEO Prue Younger will retire from her role on 31 March 2024.During her time as FICA’s CEO, Prue has led the organisation through both prosperous and challenging periods for forestry contractors, including the pandemic and significant log market downturns, as well as some highlights like the 2022 FICA Fast and Forward Forestry Expo bringing together various parts of the industry with forestry front and centre.  FICA Chair...

November 7, 2023 Posts 1-25 of 183 | Page next