Not every timber business is going to pitch in for the “promotional premium” levy first mooted by the Scottish Timber Trade Association and now taken up by the TTF as a whole. BSW vice-chairman John Brownlie acknowledged as much speaking at the federation’s International and UK Suppliers Division lunch last week.

Some companies may think they do enough for generic timber promotion in their own right. Others, as Mr Brownlie said, may just be happy to “carpet bag” on the initiative.

But, he added, the fact that the levy may not get universal support should not deter the expected majority along the timber supply chain who are ready to put their hands in their pockets. The opportunities that the extra promotional funding could help the industry to realise are just too great.

While the final details of the levy have yet to be thrashed out, it is clear that if it does get off the ground it will only amount to a small fraction of purchase price. Totted up over the billions of pounds of turnover of the industry as a whole, however, it should add up to quite a fighting fund.

Mr Brownlie, who was speaking on behalf of Michael Walker, the chair of the working party behind the levy, suggested that at least some of the money could be used to increase the UK contribution to the wood. for good campaign.

Overall, the new funds should be targeted at raising awareness of timber’s technical and, particularly, its environmental performance.

Another potential benefit of the levy, say its supporters, is that it would demonstrate the timber industry’s ability to act together. That, combined with the stress on the sustainability of the sector’s products, would help it attract the attention of government more effectively.

As Mr Brownlie summed up: “We can set up a really exciting future for the timber industry, if only we invest now.”