A new networking forum for the Scottish timber trade has been launched.

The forum, devised by the Scottish Timber Trade Association (STTA), was launched by STTA president Russell Paterson at Airth Castle near Falkirk on September 10 as a way of bringing different sectors of the timber trade in Scotland together for networking and education.

At the event, market commentaries were provided by Stora Enso UK’s Erkki Valikangas about imported softwood, while James Jones’s Ian Pirie covered UK-grown softwood and NHG Timber’s Stuart McBride spoke on hardwood.

John Paterson of Egger covered chipboard, MDF and OSB and Caledonian Plywood’s Stuart McKelvie focused on plywood.

Bruce Muirhead, Thornbridge Sawmills managing director, said the meeting was a long-awaited first step towards bringing the Scottish timber trade together and appealed for the whole trade to participate in order to make it a success.

Keynote speaker was economist Jeremy Peat, director of the David Hume Institute, who said the UK was facing a long, drawn-out road to recovery, perhaps lasting up to five years.