Trees Overview

The world needs more trees – as the raw material for a wide range of valuable and sustainable products and to reduce carbon dioxide levels. One leading analyst suggests[1] there will be a nearly three-fold increase in global demand for timber by 2050 from 2.2 billion cubic metres to 5.8 billion cubic metres.

Timber prices are also expected to increase.

Meeting this demand from sustainably produced plantation timber will require a large increase in the area planted. New Zealand has proven its capabilities for highly productive plantation forestry, particularly with radiata pine, but also with a range of other species. It has also developed sophisticated and large-scale wood processing capabilities, yet 60% of the timber produced in New Zealand continues to be exported as raw logs. Although a successful and growing industry, it currently produces around 35 million cubic metres per year or just 1.6% of global timber production.

There is plenty of untapped potential to grow more trees and process more wood products in New Zealand. This includes demand for further timber grown in Taranaki from existing wood processors plus continuing international demand for timber and wood products.

There is also market potential for biorefining and bioenergy products that will contribute to the transition of the Taranaki energy and manufacturing economy.

There is plenty of land in Taranaki (particularly in eastern Taranaki) where forestry may be the optimal land use while also contributing environmental benefits such as erosion control and reduced runoff.

[1] GHGTO2020FINAL.pdf (

Branching Out Blueprint Trees and their value chain, the opportunity for Taranaki

This blueprint provides an overview for commercial production and processing of trees and their value chain in Taranaki, and an indication of potential returns.

Trees and their Value Chain Branching Out Event

Venture Taranaki's Branching Out project held an event in 2021 in which experts presented advice, essential information and the industry connections to support the community as they consider the viability of tree and fibre products for themselves here in Taranaki.

Presenters at the event included Taranakipine, the New Plymouth processor of plantation-grown Radiata Pine; a Forestry Advisor from Transglobal Connections; and SCION, the Crown Research Institute that specialises in research, science and technology development for the forestry, wood product, and other biomaterial sectors.

The experts shared how trees are currently utilised in Taranaki, the economic opportunities, an overview of carbon farming and the Emission Trading Schemes, and projected future tree and fibre products. Topics also covered trees’ biodiversity contributions and the options for trees to be a complementary addition to existing land-uses and enterprises.

You can find the contact details for the organisations and their presentations below.

Don ShearmanLand Services Manager, Taranaki Regional Council

View Presentation

 Mike Strang - Forestry Advisor, Transglobal Connections Ltd

View Presentation

Rob McBrearty - Business Development Manager, Scion

View Presentation

Ben Collier - Collier Farms

View Presentation

Tom Boon - CEO Taranakipine and Woodspan Ltd

View Presentation

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Contact our Branching Out project lead

  • Michelle Bauer
Contact Michelle