Friday Offcuts – 17 March 2017

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We’ve got a bumper issue for you this week. Last week, New Zealand’s timber and forestry industries joined with leading architects, engineers and designers at the NZ Wood Resene Timber Design Awards to celebrate wood’s resilience especially when “engineered” into structural components. Whilst engineered timber was a dominant theme for the award finalists and winners, a local company showing “good old kiwi ingenuity” picked up the Novel Application of (wood) Fibre category on the night. In short, Douglas fir is being distilled down by a company in the lower South Island to produce high value essential oils, much of which is being exported into the US market. Read on, it’s a great story.

In New Zealand, the fire service and rural fire fighting is going through a major shakeup at the moment with a new amalgamated entity, Fire and Emergency New Zealand scheduled to start operation on 1 July. As part of the transition process, a team has just completed a series of meetings around the country talking with and listening to forestry companies. A detailed summary of discussions from the meetings has just been produced and is contained in this week’s issue.

From Australia, a decision today is expected on the future of Victoria’s Heyfield sawmill, Australian Sustainable Hardwoods after the Board met to consider a revised new offer made by VicForests earlier in the week and as anticipated, the saga of Tasmanian logging took a new turn this week. After the bill (Unlocking Production Forests) to open up an extra 356,000 hectares of former protected forests for logging was tabled on Tuesday, the association representing timber interests in Tasmania issued a statement announcing that it’s joining the many opponents and will be fighting the Bill in its current form.

This week we’ve also included a couple of videos for you as well; one on forestry safety with Hancock Forest Management, it’s workers and contractors discussing the value of the recent programmes they’ve rolled out to improve crew culture and frontline leadership among their contracting crews.

The second video (logs4jobs) has been produced by PrefabNZ, in collaboration with Carter Holt Harvey Woodproducts, BCITO and CareersNZ. It’s aimed at raising the awareness of young people, especially females, of the many work opportunities open to them in wood manufacturing, downstream processing, building and construction. An excellent initiative. The trick now though is to let others in the industry know that the resource is freely available, that it’s ready to be used and for industry to pick it up and use it in our own promotions. Let’s be honest here, this is rarely done well within our own industry. We’ve got a great track record of producing these resources. Where we fall down is in the promotion of their existence, both to industry and to the target audience and in the co-ordination of their use. Enjoy this week’s read.

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Australian Sustainable Hardwoods negotiations extended

Negotiations to save hundreds of timber worker jobs at Australia’s largest hardwood timber mill in Gippsland have been delayed by the Victorian Government reports ABC News. The new deadline comes after Agriculture Minister Jaala Pulford cut short her trade mission to Dubai last week to fly home to brief Cabinet on potential fixes to keep the mill open.

The Gippsland business announced it would close in September after VicForests, the state logging company, offered the mill just 80,000 cubic metres of timber a year after the supply deal expires in June. ASH maintained it would cripple the business, which employs 260 workers. The company has asked for an increased timber order and a AU$40 million Victorian Government package to to retool the mill and move to plantation timber.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, workers from the Heyfield sawmill in Gippsland gathered in Melbourne, arguing their industry is sustainable and urging the Victorian Government to increase the amount of timber supplied. More than 100 workers came together outside the offices of the Victorian Government to send a message to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews.

It's expected that a decision on the future of the Heyfield sawmill will be revealed today after the board of Australian Sustainable Hardwoods (ASH) met to consider whether to close the mill down.

Coverage relating to progress on the negotiations during the week can be read here; and,

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Detecting wildings using Lidar and aerial imagery

Scientists in Scion’s Geomatics team have found that wilding conifers can be detected in grasslands using a combination of Lidar and multi-spectral values obtained from aerial imagery. Their research was recently published in the journal Remote Sensing.

Self-propagating conifers are invading indigenous and semi-native grass and shrublands across large areas of New Zealand. Recent estimates place the total area affected by wildings at 1.7 M ha and this area is growing, with a rate of spread estimated at 5%–6% per annum. Detecting and eradicating wildings before they start to produce cones is vital to controlling conifer spread and minimising their ecological and economic impact. However, identifying juvenile and scattered trees is complex and labour-intensive. Current methods rely on helicopter and ground-based surveys that are expensive and require highly skilled observers.

Remote sensing offers an alternative method to detect wilding pines automatically. The Scion group have developed a method for wilding conifer detection by combining Lidar data and aerial imagery. Fusing the two datasets was the key to developing the technique. Lidar was useful for providing elevation data for detecting taller isolated trees in short vegetation, while the spectral properties of the wildings were useful for differentiating them from other trees and shrubs.

This is the first time that Lidar has been combined with aerial imagery and used for wilding conifer detection. The approach offers a promising method for detecting wilding pines in relatively complex terrain with short tussock grassland intermixed with shrub species. Implementing the approach may be an effective and efficient means of monitoring and controlling the spread of invasive conifers over large areas of New Zealand.

Photo: The Lidar point cloud coloured with aerial imagery including the near-infrared band. Wilding conifers are clearly visible in the landscape and could be detected automatically..

A link to the full report along with images from the research can be found on the ForestTECH website,

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John Deere partnering with drone company

Heavy equipment makers Deere & Co (John Deere), have forged a strategic alliance with drone-tech startup Kespry, the companies announced in Las Vegas at CONEXPO, an international trade show for the construction industry. The deal could prove a boon for sales of Kespry’s drones and data analytics software. It could help John Deere tap into a new, high-tech means of generating sales and profits in construction and forestry, an area in its overall business that slumped in 2016.

Based in Menlo Park, Kespry helps mining, construction and other businesses put drones to work gathering data and images from on high, then using these to decide where and how to cut costs and improve productivity and safety on job sites. Kespry offers cloud-based software and big data analytics, as well as their own unmanned aerial vehicles. A predecessor that does not have its own hardware to offer but does provide sophisticated software and analytics to the same industries, Airware, has a similar partnership with and an equity investment from Caterpillar.

Through the new partnership, John Deere construction and forestry equipment dealers will offer their customers Kespry Aerial Intelligence systems for use on job sites around the world. Kespry leases its drones but does not sell them outright. John Deere offers a mix of leases and sales.

Why would John Deere equipment users want Kespry’s drones and software? They capture topographic data that can be used to guide projects in road building or maintenance, or to understand volumetrics, meaning how much is growing in, or coming out, of a given tract of forest.

Recently, Kespry appointed a new CEO, enterprise software veteran George Mathew, formerly the president and COO of Alteryx. It also released the Kespry Drone 2, which can take off, fly a mission along a designated path and land without needing human operators at the controls every minute.

Mathew said, “Kespry from the get-go had the idea to make a complete, turnkey intelligence platform to really serve a specific set of users. The first use case was in mining and aggregates where we have acquired over 100 customers last year. Now we are simply expanding where we see demand.” Mathew views drones as “the new sensor network,” and believes this technology will completely transform heavy industries over the next decade. Source:

Note: Drones or UAV’s will be forming an integral part of the upcoming HarvestTECH 2017 event being run for logging contractors, forest managers and harvest planners on 20-21 June in Rotorua, New Zealand. UAV use operationally to improve contractor safety, working with fire-fighting operations and for harvest planning and post-harvest assessments will be covered by a leading forest technology company and a harvest planner with a Northland forestry company. UAV’s will also be part of the Future Forests Research Tour the day before the conference, Monday 19 June, where they’ll be put through their paces by Interpine on a CNI logging site.

Full details of this two-yearly logging event can be found on the event website,

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Essential oil a winner in timber design awards

Congratulations to ForestPlus Oils, winner of the Scion-sponsored Novel Application of (wood) Fibre category in the NZ Wood Resene Timber Design Awards held in Auckland last week. ForestPlus Oils won the prize for their ‘essential oils from pines’ product, an essential oil distilled from New Zealand Douglas-fir.

The ForestPlus team use the roadside trimmings and wilding trees from Douglas-fir forests to distill oil using their own uniquely designed distilling equipment. The tree material they use would otherwise be considered a waste product, adding a potential new profit stream for some forest owners.

Scion’s Doug Gaunt, who sat on the judging panel, said the oil project had a close alignment with Scion’s strategy to use as much of each tree as possible, not just the wood. “This product takes a small amount of side stream material from a tree and turns it into a very valuable item. Novel uses like this can change the profitability of some forestry crops and have the potential to create a whole new type of short rotation oil/chemical producing crop. It’s exactly the kind of thinking we prize at Scion.”

Paul Greaves from ForestPlus Oils says, “We’re really excited about our essential oil from pines product. The vacuum distillation technology we’ve developed, has never been used before, and it has some definite advantages compared to other techniques. The award is recognition of this.”

ForestPlus report that they’ve sent over 3300kg of oil to the US, where it’s used for aromatherapy, skincare and massage. And in that process, they have removed and processed over 1.3 million kg of biomass from road edges and wildings since 1 July 2015. Doug says, “In many ways this is another Kiwi can-do story, solving a waste problem, designing and building a plant, securing a market and making it all work”.

The NZ Wood Resene Timber Design awards are the only timber design award in New Zealand. Run by the promotional arm of the forestry industry, NZ Wood, the awards have been going since 1975 and remain a great opportunity to recognise excellence in timber engineering, innovation and high-quality building design using timber.

The Novel Application of Fibre award was judged for use of a new wood product or system which contributes to the use of wood fibre derived products in a manner that characterises its unique features via an innovative application of design, science or technology. The category was open to entries from any sector.

Source: Scion

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logs4jobs to attract women into wood manufacturing

“Women are the answer to New Zealand’s skilled worker shortage”” says Pamela Bell, CEO PrefabNZ. “Wood is going to be bigger than dairy – more sustainable and provide the jobs for our future,” says Pamela.

PrefabNZ, in collaboration with Carter Holt Harvey Woodproducts, BCITO and CareersNZ, has produced the logs4jobs video to:

- Raise the awareness of young people, especially females, of the work opportunities
- Normalise females in Primary Industry, Manufacturing, Design and Construction
- Alert employers to the ability and value of females
- Highlight the range of rewarding jobs involved in turning logs into houses
- Demonstrate that these roles are high-skill and involve technology
- Demonstrate that our natural resources – forestry, can become a higher value product by undergoing innovative construction methods

Statistics New Zealand estimates a growth in employment of 107,800 jobs in primary industries, manufacturing and construction by 2023

Women are the untapped workforce able to fill the future skilled worker shortage. Under worked and underutilized, women make excellent employees – they are more safety conscious and more productive. ( Destination Trades).

New Zealand is experiencing an affordable Housing crisis – 30,000 more houses are required each year. “Kiwis have been making prefabricated houses for over 200 years, we were one of the first, we could be one of the best” says Pamela. “These puzzle pieces can fit neatly together, let’s turn logs into jobs … grow a manufacturing industry that turns dumb logs into smart houses.”

New Zealand has a shortage of skilled workers and this problem will only get worse. It is the highly-skilled and skilled jobs within these areas which will see the biggest growth. Technical operators, Business Managers, Architects, Planners, Designers, Surveyors, Engineers.

BCITO is undertaking a new three-year research project - on how to get more women into trades, jointly commissioned with Ministry for Women and Ako Aotearoa, the National Centre for Tertiary Teaching Excellence.

PrefabNZ is a non-profit membership organisation that informs, educates and advocates for innovation and excellence in offsite design and construction in New Zealand,

Source: PrefabNZ

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Tasmania tables bill to unlock production forests

Liberal Resources Minister Guy Barnett on Tuesday tabled a bill to unlock an extra 356,000 hectares of forests for harvesting which he says will save 700 jobs as supply of sawlog runs dry.

"Advice from Forestry Tasmania that obtaining Forest Stewardship Council certification will impact on the quantity of high quality sawlogs it can harvest underlines the need for this legislation," the minister said. "Up to 15,000 cubic metres per year of sawlog may no longer be available."

Tasmania's parliament will be debating the legislation.

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What's the fire organization merger mean to NZ forestry?

The FENZ Transition project has been set up to establish Fire and Emergency New Zealand, an amalgamation of the New Zealand Fire Service, the National Rural Fire Authority, 12 enlarged rural fire districts and 26 territorial authority rural fire authorities. A single amalgamated organization will operate from 1 July 2017.

Recently Fire and Emergency NZ held a series of Forestry sector meetings in the regions. Sessions were held at: Whangarei, Gisborne, Rotorua, Palmerston North, Balclutha and Nelson. Questions raised by the forestry sector – and answers relating to forestry’s place in the merger have been collated by the transition team. Please find attached a 12-page document based on all of the meetings that we hope should answer all of your questions.

If you have any further questions, please contact Fraser Fyfe or Gary Lockyer

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Forestry business taking the moral high ground

We have run a couple of stories in recent issues covering the Greenpeace Resolute Forest Products battle going on right now. This excellent piece on the industry fighting back was written by Jaana Woiceshyn who teaches business ethics and competitive strategy at the Haskayne School of Business, University of Calgary, Canada. The final sentence probably sums up many of our thoughts on this current case, “It (Resolute Forest Products) deserves our gratitude; let’s hope others will be inspired by its example.”

“Business is under continual attack, by environmentalist and other NGOs, helped by Hollywood celebrities and often hostile media. The attackers accuse business of destroying the natural environment, increasing inequality, deceiving their customers and exploiting their workers—all for “greedy” pursuit of profit maximization. No wonder surveys show that people do not trust business Greenpeace’s attacks on Resolute Forest Products, Canada’s largest forest products company, is a good example.

For years Greenpeace has been running an attack campaign, publicly accusing Resolute, among other things, for “destroying Canada’s boreal forests,” being a “forest destroyer” and causing “a caribou death spiral of extinction.” The environmentalist NGO also sent letters containing such libelous claims to Resolute’s customers, leading them to cancel their paper contracts. U.S. chains such as Rite Aid and Best Buy, for example, canceled large flyer contracts, further intimidated by Greenpeace protesters who harassed their customers outside of stores.

But the appropriately named Resolute did not respond to Greenpeace’s attack campaign by appeasing and apologizing, like many other companies do in the hopes of being spared from further attacks. Led by CEO Richard Garneau, one of my corporate heroes, Resolute realized that you cannot stop a bully by appeasing it, and started to fight back. The company sued Greenpeace for defamation and libel, first in Ontario. It then expanded the lawsuit to the United States, using the the Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act to allege that Greenpeace is a “global fraud” that mislead its supporters to donate money based on false claims.

Such vigorous defense by Resolute has proven effective in gaining Greenpeace’s attention. Although the NGO is not admitting guilt for misleading donors or apologizing for its conduct, in the recent court filings it is defending itself by acknowledging that is claims against Resolute are merely subjective opinion and “rhetorical hyperbole” or “vigorous epithets.” Greenpeace argues it is merely exercising its right to free speech with such misrepresentation of facts. The court has not yet issued a verdict, but it is hard to believe that the First Amendment would protect defamation and libel, or deception to mislead customers and donors.

The Greenpeace and Resolute example is important for two reasons. First, it has demonstrated the dishonesty of environmentalist organizations in their fabrication of claims to advance their anti-development, anti-human cause. This will help open the eyes of many gullible supporters (although likely not of the most ardent believers who are beyond the reach of facts and don’t care about human flourishing).

Second, this example has shown how important it is for business to take the moral high ground and defend itself against baseless attacks. Greenpeace accused Resolute for destroying the Canadian boreal forests. Any rational person would ask: Why would a forest products company destroy its source of livelihood and profitability? Forests are renewable natural resource that needs to be maintained so that companies can create value from them for their customers, employees and shareholders, and to all others with whom they trade. Resolute employees have planted over a billion trees over the years to replace those it has harvested, ensuring the continuing health of the forest, livelihood of their employees, products for their customers, and return on their shareholders investment.

Companies like Resolute do important work that make all our lives better. Organizations like Greenpeace want untouched forests and untouched nature, at the cost of human survival and flourishing. Companies must defend themselves by taking the moral high ground and show which standard of value is preferable: human flourishing on a planet where resources are cultivated and managed for long-term profit maximization to benefit human lives, or by a planet untouched by, and therefore devoid of, humans.

Appeasing and apologizing for creating the material values that we need and that make our lives better will only perpetuate the attacks on business by those opposed to development and human flourishing. Only by recognizing the moral value of its work, can business stand up and defend itself like Resolute Forest Products has done. It deserves our gratitude; let’s hope others will be inspired by its example”.


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Funding round for forest planting opens

New Zealand’s Associate Primary Industries Minister, Louise Upston, has announced the opening this week of the Afforestation Grant Scheme 2017 funding round.

“The goal of the Afforestation Grant Scheme (AGS) is to increase the planting of new forests and the rate of afforestation,” Ms Upston says. “New Zealand has a significant amount of land at serious risk of erosion, and forest cover is the best form of erosion control. We are on track to meet our goal of planting 15,000ha of new forest by 2020 through the AGS.”

Through the AGS, the Ministry for Primary Industries provides grants to growers to plant new small to medium-sized forests. Launched in 2015, the AGS has so far resulted in contracts of just over NZ$10 million to plant around 7700ha of new forest around the country.

Applications for the Afforestation Grants Scheme are open until 28 April 2017. For more information about the AGS go to:

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Improving leadership & culture in the forest

For the past three years, Hancock Forest Management has been running programmes to improve crew culture and frontline leadership among its contracting crews. Hear what the company’s management, workers and contractors have to say about the benefits of this investment.

Download the case study.

Watch the video


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Timber Association not supportive of Forestry Bill

Controversial plans by Tasmania’s government to open up 350,000 hectares of former protected forests for logging have been undermined by the timber industry group joining environmentalists in united opposition.

In a major embarrassment for the Hodgman Liberal government, the pro-logging legislation it had hoped would shore up votes in regional seats ahead of a state election is now opposed by the influential Forest Industries Association of Tasmania.

FIAT issued a statement announcing it would join the Greens and Wilderness Society in fighting the government’s Forestry (Unlocking Production Forests) Bill, at least in its current form.

“We have advised the government that we are unable to support the bill ... as it will create unnecessary sovereign risk in log supply and problems in our markets and a return to the ‘forestry wars’,” said FIAT chief executive Terry Edwards.

Mr Edwards said the industry did not accept the central premise of the legislation: that opening up the forests, which include highly contentious areas on Bruny Island, as well as in Wielangta, the Blue Tier and the Tarkine, was needed to protect jobs. More >>


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'Why be a forester' video competition

The University of Melbourne are running a new competition to help showcase the jobs in the industry, and all that is great about working in the forest, fibre and wood products industry.

Are you keen and enthusiastic forester who wants to show the world what a great career you have? Do you want to provide inspiration to the next generation of foresters? Foresters are involved in a broad range of forest management activities relating to production, conservation, fire, water, carbon and policy.

Help us educate people about the broad range of roles undertaken by foresters by creating a short 30-45 second video about how you make a difference in forest management and you can be in the running for some great prizes. For more information on how to get involved (closes in just two weeks) visit the University of Melbourne website.

Source: VAFI The News Mill

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Builders appoint first female CEO

The Board of Master Builders Australia has announced its appointment of Mrs Denita Wawn as the new Chief Executive Officer of Master Builders Australia effective 20 March 2017. Mrs Wawn will be Master Builders’ first female CEO in its 127-year history to represent the AU$200 billion building and construction industry and only the third CEO in thirty years.

“The Board is confident that Mrs Wawn’s leadership will see the implementation of its vision for Master Builders as a modern, credible and influential national voice for its more than 32,000 members,” the National President of Master Builders, Mr Dan Perkins said.

“Denita has impeccable credentials for success including her wealth of experience spearheading game changing advocacy and industrial relations campaigns at the National Farmers Federation (NFF), and the Australian Hotels Association (AHA),” Dan Perkins said.

“As CEO of the Brewers Association of Australia and New Zealand, Denita implemented a highly successful reputational change strategy at a national and international level,” he said. “Denita has spent over the past 12 months as General Manager Operations at Master Builders, giving her a strong foundation to understand the issues impacting on Master Builders and our members,” Dan Perkins said.

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Trimble acquires Finnish forestry solutions companies

Trimble announced earlier this month that they have acquired the forestry business of Savcor Oy, a global supplier of forestry solutions for performance optimization and enterprise management as well as Silvadata, a provider of cloud-based data, collaboration and workflow automation services to smalland medium sized forestry companies.

"The Savcor and Silvadata acquisitions build upon our strategy to provide global customers with a complete end-to-end ecosystem for forest management, traceability and timber processing," said Ken Moen, general manager of Trimble's Forestry Division. "Our fundamental focus is to provide integrated solutions that drive agility, improve efficiency and provide better visibility at each stage of the forest lifecycle."

Savcor Oy

Headquartered in Finland with offices in Brazil and Germany, the Savcor forestry business provides information and online diagnostic solutions for forestry processing and production planning. Complementing Trimble's Connected Forest solutions, Savcor's Zenith software manages forestry information for land acquisition planning and assessment, silviculture, harvesting and logistics to receiving timber at the mill. Savcor's Wedge™ software provides online process diagnostics by integrating and analyzing data from a variety of mill system sources to identify production bottlenecks and streamline mill operations.


Finland based Silvadata is a provider of cloud-based data, collaboration and workflow automation services to small and medium sized forestry companies for lifecycle enterprise management. Silvadata's SilvaPro is a Software as a Service (SaaS) for partner collaboration used by forestry management associations, forest owner unions, private forestry owners and professionals for forestry lifecycle management functions. SilvaPro is specifically designed to address forest management, planning, wood procurement, work site planning and execution.

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Digitalization and automation crucial for survival

According to new Tieto study there is an urgent need to create a new industrial paradigm in Sweden where not only environmental sustainability is safeguarded, but also new business models that secure long-term competitiveness. That is one of the key findings in the outlook report “The road ahead for Scandinavian industry”, just published by Tieto and KTH.

Digitalization is pressing on, customer demands are more challenging than ever and environmental concerns are calling for a re-organised approach toward industrial production. These challenges are top of the agenda for the Swedish industry today, and getting on-board with the new technology is a matter of survival.

According to the new outlook report “The road ahead for Scandinavian industry”, published by Tieto and KTH, achieving long-term competitiveness is well within the reach of all manufacturers, large and small – provided that action is taken now.

– In terms of digitalization, companies in process and discrete manufacturing need to act quickly to catch up with other business sectors such as telecom and retail. While this can be done in a relatively short time span, the goals and visions must be clearly defined. Replacing legacy systems is not just worthwhile but crucial for survival of the manufacturing industry, says Per Håkansson, Head of Manufacturing industry Sweden at Tieto.

Nine key trends in Scandinavian industries

In the report, Tieto and KTH identify that there are multiple drivers behind the new potential industrial paradigm, including intelligent products, new ground-breaking materials, the sharing economy and Internet of Things. Together, they lay the ground for nine trends that should lead to the rethinking of business models among Swedish industries:

- Scalable and mobile operations: New customer demands are steering manufacturers away from conventional high volume products towards scope-oriented products. The move to scalable, cost-effective IT systems and new business approaches does not only make strategic sense, it is a matter of survival. A highly likely consequence of this development is that the primary source of income for manufacturers will also change as they become far more dependent on a range of sub suppliers in different industry segments. In terms of operations at larger companies, having one main production site may well be a thing of the past.

- The production shift: In the production systems of the future, machine automation and Plug to Order (PTO) modules will be key components. PTO refers to new ways of managing production without having to purchase equipment which is used and then discarded. Going forward, industrial machines will be leased or hired and will also reconfigure themselves autonomously. When the equipment has become fully outdated and irrelevant, only then will it return to the service provider. - The coopetition effect: The principle of “coopetition”, a concept that was launched in the 1990s, is a method for bringing together companies with common interests to cooperate in order to attain a higher-value production. Recently, this method has proven to be very successful in helping to break new ground and to form solid working relationships that help companies to co-evolve in any given market sector. The coopetition effect is coming into full swing.

-Cloud manufacturing:. With the rapid evolution of information technology, ways of thinking and conducting business in manufacturing have changed fundamentally. In order to cope with rising volumes of data and fast-changing customer demands, decision makers need to have constant access to the very latest data and reports from factory floors and other key sources. If applications and communications tools are lacking in any way, business will be affected. Consequently, more and more companies are recognizing the clear advantages of adopting a cloud-based platform as an integrated information portal, accessible at any time, from any location. A recent development in cloud computing is the growing popularity of the pay-as-you-go model.

-The metrology equation: . The most promising research in production metrology is , that are combined with strategic measurement planning. The latter is a key-factor in order to reduce costs in the assembly process due to poor quality, which may result savings as high as 40 per cent on the total production cost.

-Adaptive scheduling: “Just in Time” is a manufacturing principle that has been around for many years, but few companies can pride themselves on having realized the concept. A tool that could potentially change all this is the Demand Responsive Planning (DRP) system which provides a fast route to workload control by systemizing the flow of activities.

-Bridging the gap: . Most support systems in industry today are based on PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) – a technology that was developed in the 1960s. Now is the time to invest in a series of steps that will introduce responsive and self-optimizing systems that can adapt to changing product ranges and deliveries.

-Total connectivity: . Creating the conditions for total connectivity – incorporating customer requirements, design, production and distribution – will be a key challenge over the next few years. To make a modern production system work efficiently, all data related to a product needs to be collected and analysed at every step, and then channelled to the right user.

- The next frontier: additive manufacturing. Minimizing waste in the production cycle makes as much sense for business as it does for the environment. Adopting ecologically-geared processes will become a matter of competitiveness in the years ahead and a wide range of new approaches are now being tested and refined. Both Sweden and Europe in large are predominantly driven by their industries, and any downturn in this sector influences its welfare society. Manufacturing is a major socioeconomic force and, as such, disregarding its needs would be catastrophic.

Digitalization has to be tackled in one way or another. We are in complete agreement with KTH that now is the time to re-evaluate current IT systems. Companies that focus on the advantages of modernization stand a far better chance of surviving the storm, but also of building a prosperous future, says Per Håkansson. Further information can be found by clicking here.


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Buy and Sell

... and one to end the week on ... St Patrick's Day

It being St Patrick's Day today, we better throw in a few Irish jokes to get into the swing of things.

During a recent customer password check audit at the Bank of Ireland it was found that Paddy O'Toole was using the following password:


When Paddy was asked why he had such a long password, he replied, 'Bejazus! are yez stupid? Oi was told me password had to be at least 8 characters long and include one capital."

Dr O'Mahony tells his patient: "I have bad news and worse news, John."

"Oh dear," John replies. "What's the bad news?" asks the patient.

The doctor replies: "You only have 24 hours to live."

"That's terrible," says the patient. "How can the news possibly be worse?"

Dr O'Mahony replies: "I've been trying to contact you since yesterday."

Paddy and Mick are walking down the road and Paddy has a bag of doughnuts in his hand.

Paddy says to Mick: "If you can guess how many doughnuts are in my bag, you can have them both."

An Irish priest is driving down to New York and gets stopped for speeding in Connecticut. The state trooper smells alcohol on the priest's breath and then sees an empty wine bottle on the floor of the car.

He says, "Sir, have you been drinking?"

"Just water," says the priest.

The trooper says, "Then why do I smell wine?"

The priest looks at the bottle and says, "Good Lord! He's done it again!"

A ventriloquist is telling Irish jokes in Davy Byrne's pub in Grafton Street, Dublin, when, O'Leary, an irate Irishman stands up shouting, 'You're making out we're all dumb and stupid. I oughtta punch you in the nose.'

'I'm sorry sir, I...........'

'Not you,' says O'Leary, 'I'm talking to that little fella on your knee.'

Paddy Was driving his lorry when he saw a bridge with a sign saying 10 foot max. headroom.

He slowed down wondering if he could drive under it or not.

, 'A shure I'll give it a go, he thought only to find that his lorry got stuck underneath it.

Paddy sat back in his seat, poured out a cup of tea and lit a cigarette. A policeman arrived a short time later and knocked on the cab door which Paddy then opened, 'what do you think you are doing? asked the policeman in a sharp tone,

'Sure I'm having me tea break, replied Paddy.

'And what do you work at? asked the policeman, 'Agh shure I deliver bridges,! smiled Paddy!

And on that note, enjoy any Irish celebrations planned for the day and have a great weekend. Cheers.

Brent Apthorp
Editor, Friday Offcuts
Distinction Dunedin Hotel
6 Liverpool Street, Dunedin 9016, New Zealand
PO Box 904, Dunedin 9054, New Zealand
Tel: +64 (03) 470 1902, Mob: +64 21 227 5177, Fax: +64 (03) 470 1906
Web page:

This week's extended issue, along with back issues, can be viewed at

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