Softwood and panel products for construction, formwork and hoarding will be the main products needed in the initial Olympic site construction work, ODA leader of construction products Dr Peter Bonfield told TTJ.

He said auditing of the supply process would be “rigorous” with checks at the gates to the Olympic site and on the premises to ensure only legal and sustainable wood was being delivered.

Regular and random audits would also be carried out, with timber suppliers facing the prospect of ejection from the Timber Supplier Panel if things go wrong.

Dr Bonfield said the ODA could increase the number of panel members from time to time, while later in the construction process there would be need for specific timber products during fit-outs. Pallets and scaffold boards are excluded from the ODA’s criteria.

“We are very appreciative and encouraged by the positive support the industry has given us in increasing the amount of legal and sustainable timber and wood products.

“We look forward to receiving the responses from the pre-qualification questionnaire and working together to demonstrate that it’s possible for a major ambitious customer to source legal and sustainable wood products from a responsible industry.

“We are are one of the first significant projects to give the timber industry an opportunity to prove what it can do.”

Dr Bonfield admitted the ODA was initially concerned whether there was sufficient certified timber available, but he said the trade had worked hard to grow its capacity.

He said the Timber Supplier Panel was an “innovation” as it connected tier one contractors, who have legal and sustainable timber sourcing written into their contracts, with a place where they can buy legal and sustainable wood.

“They [contractors] have a place to buy their timber products from where they know they will not be let down.”