Field Trip

The one day field trip will include visits to world class framing and add value sawmills, and other interesting sites in South Waikato.


Confirmed visits are below with other visits yet to be confirmed and added to the days programme.


Cost of the Field Trip is NZD 295.00 (plus GST for NZ Delegates). Included in this cost is Coach transport to the various sites, escorted site visits and lunch.


Limited availablity, register now on the registration page.






Monday 21 August 2017 

  Field Trip
7.30am-8.00am Delegates to meet in Lobby of Novotel Lakeside Hotel Registration for Field Trip and Conference
8.00am Depart Novotel Lakeside Hotel by Coach  
8.15am-9.45am Red Stag Sawmill Site Visit - Largest sawmill in Southern Hemisphere and focussed both on industrial [house framing and roof and truss],  and "add value" wood products Confirmed 
9.45am Depart Red Stag and Drive to Putaruru   
10.45am-11.45am Site Visits - Kiwi Lumber and Pacific Pine pruned log sawmills Confirmed
11.45am Depart Mills to Putaruru Timber Museum  
12.00pm-12.45pm Visit Putaruru Timber Museum - Lunch at Museum Confirmed
12.45pm-1.15pm  During lunch - Presentation by Ian Elliot, Farmer and Managing Director of Trinity Lands - one of NZ's largest farm owners. Confirmed 
1.15pm Depart Museum to Lichfield Dairy Factory  
1.30pm - 2.30pm Site Visit - Lichfield Dairy Factory Confirmed 
2.30pm Depart Dairy Factory to Waratah Engineering  
2.45pm-3.45pm  Site Visit - Waratah Factory -- John Deere's global manufacturers of harvesting machine felling heads Confirmed
3.45pm-4.15pm Hancock Timber Resource Group (HTRG): Largest softwood forest owners in both Australia and New Zealand  Confirmed
4.15pm Depart for Return to Rotorua  
5.00pm Field Trip Ends Novotel Lakeside Hotel

Field Trip Hosts


RST Logo

Red Stag Timber consists of two sawmill lines, with associated timber processing operations for kiln drying, planning, treating and remanufacturing. Currently producing over 450,000m³ of Radiata Pine and Douglas-fir lumber per annum, resulting in an annual turnover of over NZ $180 million, Red Stag Timber is commissioning a new sawmill that will be capable of cutting over 700,000 m3 per annum. Red Stag Timber employs approximately 300 staff.
Red Stag Timber has a long-term commitment to further developing its product range and market base. Its particular focus is on structural lumber products, but it also produces landscaping, industrial, appearance and furniture lumber grades. These products are sold in New Zealand and exported to Australia, the Pacific Islands, Asia, Africa, Europe and North America.


Kiwi Lumber is a privately owned New Zealand company operating three modern sawmills located in the North Island of New Zealand. Our three mills located at Putaruru, Dannevirke and Masterton have a combined production of 185,000 m3 of sawn timber output per annum, with the capacity to kiln dry and planer finish all of our production. Kiwi Lumber employs approximately 220 staff across the three sites.

Our modern sawmills are strategically situated close to the large commercial plantings in the Hawke’s Bay/Wairarapa and the Central Plateau of the North Island.

With sawmills processing both structural and pruned logs, Kiwi Lumber offers an extensive range of products that include clear boards, decking, treated outdoor products, structural lumber and industrial grades. Our production is wholesaled through New Zealand as well as a range of export markets that include North America, Europe, Australia, Asia and the Pacific Islands.

The Putaruru sawmill cuts 45,000m3 per annum from Pruned Log. The most recent capital project that has been completed was the installation of a new optimised edger in the sawmill and Weinig planer in the dry mill.



Pacific Pine is an independently owned and operated, medium sized, sawmill located in Putaruru, which is situated in the Central North Island of New Zealand.
We have a good reputation for producing very high quality Radiata Pine timber products milled from pruned logs which are sourced from well-managed, totally renewable low risk forests.

Approx. 33,000m3 sawn timber is produced annually and is marketed throughout New Zealand, Australia, South East Asia and Europe.  Over the last 10 years the European market has become a major marketing focus for our clear wood products of which the majority is modified by one process or another.  Timber for our remaining markets is mostly sold to timber processors and manufacturers where it may be laminated, fingered jointed, profile and moulded or made into furniture and the like. 
Apart from the sawmill we operate four accelerated-conventional, medium temperature kilns enabling us to consistently supply the market with a very stable kiln dried product. Other processes include an eight head, wide bed planer/moulder, snip saws for precision length trimming and a band resaw.

The company has jointly embarked on a very exciting and challenging project with a Hamilton based engineering firm to fabricate and install a syngas plant which when commissioned will replace our dependence on natural gas as fuel for the heat plant boilers.   The fuel to run the syngas plant will be generated from site residues such as sawdust, bark and shavings and the gas produced will be sufficient to run the four kilns and provide for additional drying when required.



The New Zealand Timber Museum represents an important part of our heritage, how the timber industry evolved from the back breaking days of clearing bush by hand and with bullocks to the highly specialised  logging of the 21st century. This museum is unique, not only is it one of the few museums in New Zealand specialising in the timber industry, its location is in the heart of what has been the most thriving timber district in New Zealand for over one hundred years.

Taupo Totara Timber Company, New Zealand Forest Products, Putaruru Timber Yard Ltd , Ellis & Burnand Ltd have all been major contributors to the development of the Museum and have permanent displays of their company histories on show. In more recent years, Carter Holt Harvey has donated records, photographs and mill equipment to the museum to add to the comprehensive history already on display.

Although originally set up as a museum portraying the local timber industry's history it quickly expanded to encompass the national timber industry as a whole.

Since its inception the museum has been indebted for the tremendous support received from: the local community, community organisations, the tireless volunteers, the Putaruru Timber Museum Society, the timber industry locally and nationally for their knowledge and expertise, machinery and financial support; local businesses who have donated materials or supplied them at cost; local government, the labour provided through Labour Department, PEP, Workskills and the Department of Corrections and for grants received from organisations like NZ Lotteries Commission, Pub Charity and Transpower.



While Lichfield is one of Fonterra’s younger sites, over its 21-year history it has become one of the most significant for the Co-operative. Lichfield celebrated the official opening of a new state-of-the-art milk powder dryer in December 2016. The site can now process up to 7.6 million litres of milk daily from more than 500 South Waikato farmers. The new dryer – the joint-largest in the world alongside Fonterra’s Darfield D2 dryer – accounts for 4.4 million of those litres which is enough milk to fill two Olympic-sized swimming pools.

The site is also Fonterra’s second largest cheese plant. Built in just over nine months in 1995 to initially make Dry Salt and Brine Salt Cheeses, it was once the largest cheese factory in the southern hemisphere, and was built at record speed for a dairy plant of its kind at the time. The two cheese plants on site produce 63,000 tonnes of cheese each year. This includes household names like Gouda, Edam, Cheddar, Parmesan, Nobel, Swiss and Egmont. Lichfield’s cheese supplies the domestic market as well as being exported to international markets including Japan, Korea, Mexico, Chile and Russia. Its whey products are also exported to China and the USA.

Fonterra Lichfield is proud of its sustainability initiatives, both on site and in the community. The site regularly supports local students to gain qualifications in agriculture and also takes part in planting programmes along the nearby Waihou River embankment. To educate local primary school children about developing a sustainable garden the site has donated a worm farm and glasshouse.



Trinity Lands Ltd is an agribusiness committed to growing healthy food for the world, in particular focused on high quality Gold & Green kiwifruit grown on our six orchards located between Waihi & Whakatane. Last year we produced 1.5million trays of fruit for export, we are the largest shareholder in Zespri. Our other main focus is production of high quality dairy products through our shareholding in Fonterra. We have 20 dairy farms with 14,000 cows on our farms between Tokoroa, Tirau and Te Aroha. A third of our farms have 50% sharemilkers and the balance have contract sharemilkers. Last year the farms produced just under 6million kgMS. We have about 600 hectares of radiata pine forestry in woodlots around our farms. Headquarters are in Putaruru with a small but skilled executive and support team including our own veterinarians.

The company’s genesis was the formation of Lichfield Lands in 1951 when it purchased 3670 acres of forestry land, the Waratah Block located at Lichfield, as the trees were harvested the land was converted to sheep farming at a rate of approx. 200 acres a year.

A large part of the company’s business has been converting ex forestry land to drystock and then into dairy, we also purchased 10 of the Carter Holt Harvey forestry conversion farms located close to Tokoroa. In the Bay of Plenty we have converted dairy farms to kiwifruit orchards.

Trinity Lands is a registered charitable company with three shareholding trusts, Lichfield Lands Inc, Longview Trust and Hillview Trust. 




Waratah has proudly served the global forestry industry for more than 40 years, pioneering mechanised harvesting with first-class products of distinct quality, durability, and reliability paired with unparalleled customer support. We manufacture at state-of-the-art factories located in New Zealand and Finland, and we are dedicated to delivering high-quality, innovative, and proven products developed with customer-driven focus.

Our extensive support and parts distribution network, rigorous global application testing, advanced manufacturing systems, and sophisticated quality measures set us apart and ensure our products are worthy of the Waratah brand and Built To Work designation. We aspire to be the preferred equipment provider in the forestry industry, and proudly support that community worldwide from locations in Australia, New Zealand, Eastern and Western United States, Canada, South America, Finland, and Russia.



 Hancock Timber Resource Group (HTRG), the world’s largest global timberland investment manager, develops and manages globally diversified timberland portfolios for institutional investors. We manage USD 10.5 billion located across 2.4 million hectares in Australia, Canada, Chile, New Zealand and the United States. We manage our clients’ timberland assets utilizing approximately 400 forestry, investment and financial professionals. Our clients include public and corporate pension plans, high net-worth individuals, sovereign governments and foundations and endowments. We offer several investment vehicles, including individually managed accounts and commingled funds.

HTRG actively seeks and acquires large tracts of timberland in the major timber growing regions of the world. HTRG manages approximately 830 000 hectares of land of which 575 000 hectares are productive plantation timberland in New Zealand and Australia.

Timberland investments provide institutional investors with a number of benefits, including a history of attractive returns, excellent capital preservation, low correlation with other asset classes and low to moderate risk.


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