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Post: Sappi Forests FSC Farmer of the year announced

Sappi Forests FSC Farmer of the year announced
Front row from left: Braam Steenkamp of the Warburton Sawmill and Farm (Sappi Forests FSC Farmer of the Year) Maureen Blignaut (H&L Houtkontrakteurs) - Mpumalanga Regional Winner Linda Rautenbach (De Witt Trust) Back Row: from left Bruno Paul (R&V Beleggings) Anton Uys (from Anton Uys Farm)

The winner of Sappi Forests’ Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Group Scheme Farmer of the Year award is Braam Steenkamp of the Warburton Sawmill and farm in Warburton, in the Mpumalanga Highveld. Braam, a commercial tree farmer, farms pine and eucalyptus trees. The Mpumalanga Regional winner was Maureen Blignaut of H&L Houtkontrakteurs.

Speaking at the awards function, Sappi Forests General Manager Dietmar Schroeder said the businesses in Sappi’s FSC Group Scheme are exceptional. “I was very impressed with the FSC Group Scheme farmers are clearly achieving new levels of excellence in commercial tree farming,” he said.

Sappi’s FSC Farmer of the Year Award celebrates excellence in the management of plantation forestry on private land. 42 farmers in Mpumalanga and KwaZulu Natal participate in the scheme, and were eligible for the award. According to Sappi’s Group Scheme Manager, Axel Jooste, growers who supply Sappi with timber have an option to join the scheme.

Certification is achieved by passing an assessment carried out by an FSC-accredited certification body, with forest management conformity assessed against the FSC Principles and Criteria. The evaluation process consists of an in-depth review of forest management processes and their environmental, social, and economic impact. Once any non-conformities have been addressed satisfactorily and criteria have been met, the farmers become members. The advantage of FSC certification is that all timber from certified farms carry the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) trademark, indicating that these products originate from sustainable, well-managed managed farms where both people and the environment benefit. Sappi also pays a premium to their FSC farmers, for timber that is FSC certified.

The farms in Sappi’s scheme are audited and scored annually, by independent auditors, to ensure standards are maintained. The top performers are recognised in the Farmer of the Year Awards programme. The overall winner for both KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga is awarded the coveted Bushbuck trophy, and regional winners receive a prized certificate.

“I am excited and proud to be the recipient of Sappi’s FSC Farmer of the Year Award. It is testimony of the passion I have for farming, and the hard work and commitment of the people who work for me. Achieving certification is an arduous process, but the benefits outweigh the effort by far. There are numerous advantages to being FSC certified. Amongst others, it streamlines your business processes, and improves your overall operational efficiency. FSC also requires close contact with your employees, your neighbours and your local community, which for me, has resulted in a great working relationship with them. I am also guaranteed of a market for my timber, which provides job security to my people,” said award winner Braam Steenkamp.

Source: Sappi

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  • Those who grow alone, die alone: why transformation is strategic for the MTO Group
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  • Saw Specialists
  • Stihl
  • Sunshine Seedling Services
  • Treated Timber Products
  • TWK
  • WoodBiz Africa
  • Afrequip
  • Latschbacher
  • Alternative Structures Logo
  • Arxada
  • Bell
  • Ezigro Seedlings
  • Foresta Timber & Board
  • FSC
  • Hin-Tech Manufacturing
  • Husqvarna
  • John Deere
  • Khulani Timbers
  • Kwamahlati Training Services
  • LESH
  • Loadtech Load Cells
  • Logmech
  • Merensky
  • Mondi
  • Those who grow alone, die alone: why transformation is strategic for the MTO Group
  • NCT
  • Pangolin
  • Patula Risk
  • Ponsse
  • Rance Timbers
  • Sabie Poles
  • SAFCOL
  • Sappi
  • Saw Specialists
  • SAWPA
  • SSA
  • Stihl
  • Sunshine Seedling Services
  • Treated Timber Products
  • TWK
  • UCL Sawmill
  • Wood-Mizer
  • WoodBiz Africa
  • Wuhlf

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