Image Image
3-4 August 2021, Rotorua, NEW ZEALAND | Virtual Online, AUSTRALIA & INTERNATIONAL

WoodTECH 2021 provides a unique independent platform for Australasian companies to evaluate the very latest wood scanning, sawmilling equipment and mill maintenance tools from around the globe

Registrations are Live
WoodTECH 2019 Featured







Event Details


WoodTECH has been run by the Forest Industry Engineering Association (FIEA) for over 20 years, both in New Zealand and Australia. It’s provided an independent showcase for local companies to evaluate the very latest innovations, technology and operating practices around saw design and operation, mill maintenance, wood scanning, sawmilling, mill optimisation and wood manufacturing operations.

In more recent times, the event has alternated each year between green-mill and dry-mill technologies. In addition to tech updates and the opportunity of sharing information between tech providers and mill staff, the annual event also provides the only opportunity for mill production and operational staff along with mill management to get together in both countries.

The last sawmilling event, WoodTECH 2019 drew in close to 350 delegates. It really struck a chord with Australasian sawmills. WoodTECH 2020, with a focus on wood manufacturing, like all other events around the world, had to be cancelled. During lockdown, and based on discussions with local mills, it was decided to still run the WoodTECH 2020 wood manufacturing event on-line. FIEA together with the local industry ran six interactive online webinars for all major mills across Australasia in July 2020.

What's Planned for 2021?

So, with this background, the region’s major sawmilling and wood products event, WoodTECH, is planned to be run in-person for wood producers in New Zealand and, virtual online for Australia in early August 2021. At this stage, it’s expected to be one of few that will be run in 2021 – anywhere around the world.

Because of the uncertainty still surrounding international travel, there is an expectation that international presenters and delegates won’t be able to travel and attend in person. It’s planned that New Zealand sawmillers and saw doctors, along with key local equipment suppliers, will be able to meet up in Rotorua, New Zealand. Australian mills will be able to live-stream the full two-day event. The event can be watched live over the two days, or on-demand post-event, for their own on-site meetings and training.

Location AND Online Live
  • New Zealand Attendees | In Person at the Distinction Rotorua Hotel, Rotoura, New Zealand
  • Australian & International Attendees | Virtual Online Live & On-Demand
New Format
  1. Presentations from the NZ event to be live-streamed directly into Australian mills and offices. Live streaming for the first time will also be able to be accessed by sawmilling companies from outside Australasia.
  2. Live workshops from key presenters outside Australasia can be given to mill staff - in both countries.
  3. Questions can be asked from all attendees in either country to presenters and key technology providers from outside their region.
  4. Local exhibitors to be involved at the Rotorua venue for the first time in several years.
  5. Exhibitors from outside New Zealand to be involved through a number of opportunities that are being set up.
  6. Mill staff to be able to meet up as usual in New Zealand to learn from in-person and remote presenters, exhibitors and each other. Networking, such an essential part of these technology events, will be retained. Staff from other mills will be meeting at their own sites.
  7. There will also be a channel for online attendees to communicate together.

What's Covered?

Because of disruptions around travel and wood working events in 2020 and likely impact into 2021, WoodTECH 2021 will expand on the usual focus of saws and sawmilling to include much-needed updates on other aligned wood processing operations in and around the green-mill. Early planning re content for WoodTECH 2021 includes;

  • Tech innovations in wood scanning, sawmilling and mill optimisation
  • Disruptive technologies changing just how we do business
  • Integration of robotics and automation into the mill
  • Improving sawing accuracy and lumber recoveries within the mill
  • Collecting and using real-time production and machine centre data
  • Advanced troubleshooting across sawing machine centres
  • Saw alignment, saw deviation monitoring and size control
  • Preventative maintenance & planning
  • Implementing and effective use of on-line QC
  • Lessons from recent mill upgrades, rebuilds and installations
  • Machine data dashboards to drive your business.
  • Advances in kiln drying and on-site energy management
  • Timber treatment and wood modification technologies
  • Options for the better utilisation of wood wastes
  • Harnessing the skills of your on-site team

Who Will Attend?

The New Zealand and Australian wood processing industry, including:

  • Sawmill site managers
  • Sawmill production and engineering managers
  • Saw-doctors
  • Mill supervisors, maintenance and production staff
  • Mill and lumber Q.C. personnel
  • Wood treatment managers
  • Kiln drying production staff
  • Technology, equipment, product and service suppliers to sawmilling and wood manufacturing companies

Interest in Exhibiting

At this stage, if interested in exhibiting at WoodTECH 2021, please get in touch with us. If planning to exhibit, best to get in early as spaces will go very quickly by contacting Gordon Thomson on .


We have been working with a wide range of local and international technology leaders to deliver an innovative and practical two-day programme. Given Covid-19, this year's event programme will run both in Rotoura, New Zealand and online virtually live.

If you have any questions about the programme or are interested in speaking, please contact Brent Apthorp on .

DAY ONE  |  Tuesday 3 August 2021
New Zealand (NZDT) | Australia (AEST)
10.00am 8.00am

Welcome & Introduction


Session 1: Australasian SawmillingUnder stress or an industry that’s embracing new technology to improve its efficiencies and international competitiveness
10.10am 8.10am

New Zealand - The Opportunity of a Generation?

Climate change and the readiness of the NZ wood processing industry to take advantage of a new future?

David Turner, Executive Director, Sequal Lumber, New Zealand

10.40am 8.40am

Australia - The current health of the country’s sawmilling and wood manufacturing industries

Measures to ensure the longer-term viability of the sector.

Cameron MacDonald, Executive General Manager-Australia, OneFortyOne, Australia (live video link)

11.10am 9.10am

A Recent Processing Dilemma

How did Australian mills process and what were the lessons from processing the large volumes of fire damaged logs arising from the 2019/20 summer bush fires.

Jonathan Harrington, R&D Engineer, Ripple Tech, New Zealand & Kim Harris, Quality/Compliance Manager, AKD Softwoods (Tumut), Australia

11.40am 9.40am

Technology Showcase

Short presentations on new product innovations.

Session 2: Technology Advancements in Sawing, Scanning, Mill Optimisation

Lunch & Networking


Extended Break

1.00pm 11.00am

Band-mill Monitoring - Is it possible to create a safer band-mill environment while extending the life of your saws?

Jason Clay, International Account Manager, USNR, USA (live video link)

1.15pm 11.15am

Using AI and X-Ray Technologies to Scan, Sort and Trace Lumber through the Mill

Jere Heikkinen, CEO, Finnos, Finland (live video link)

1.30pm 11.30am

Automating Realtime Data Collection in the Sawmill

A case study of setting up a mill wide dashboard system for a Canadian sawmilling operation

Chris Graham, President, B3 Systems & Travas Hack, Superintendent, EACOM’s Nairn Lake sawmill, Canada (live video link)

1.45pm 11.45am

Maintenance, Repairs & Operation

Optimising Parts Availability & Asset Performance in Your Wood Processing Operation.

Andrew Jordan, Managing Director, Xtivity, Canada (live video link)


Saw-guides and Lubrication

Troubleshooting saw, lubrication and guide issues in the mill

Joe Shields, Upgrades & Conversion Specialist, USNR, USA (live video link)


Afternoon Tea & Networking


Short Break

Session 3: Saw Design, Selection, Maintenance & Operation
3.00pm 1.00pm

Fine Tuning your Circular & Band Saws

Key factors influencing the cutting behaviour and operation of your saws.

Bruce Lehmann, Senior Scientist, FPInnovations, Canada (live video link)

3.30pm 1.30pm

Circle saws collar, coding and function

Dave Purinton, VP Marketing, Simonds International, USA (live video link)

3.40pm 1.40pm

Voestalpine: A look inside the headquarters of Voestalpine Precision Strip

Based in Lower Austria, Voestalpine supplies Uddeholmstrip premium steel for band-mill operations worldwide.

Stewart Martin, CEO, Checkmate Precision Cutting Tools, New Zealand

3.50pm 1.50pm

Cutting Edge Sawshop Technology - Saw Servicing Development and Advances in Smart Machinery

Philipp Iseli, CEO, Iseli & Co, Switzerland & Thode Knife & Saw (live video link)

4.00pm 2.00pm

Mini-Workshop: Managing and Making Use of Data to Drive the Business

The what, why and how of Statistical Process Control – what is SPC, why should you use it, and how can you best use SPC to manage and improve mill processes?

Scott Leavengood Director, Oregon Wood Innovation Centre Oregon State University, USA (live video link)

5.30pm 3.30pm

End of Day One | Drinks, Refreshments & Networking

DAY TWO  |  Wednesday 4 August 2021
New Zealand (NZDT) | Australia (AEST)
9.30am 7.30am

Welcome & Introduction


9.35am 7.35am

Real Time Data Collection and Use for Machine Diagnosis and Troubleshooting

Using Opening Face Data/Wane Analysis from your Sawing Machine Centres.

Nick Barrett, President, SiCam Systems, Canada (live video link)

Session 4: Wood Treatment & Modification Technologies & Opportunities for Local Wood Producers
10.30am 8.30am

Thermal Wood Treatment in Australasia

The technology, commercial applications, and journey from Australasia’s first heat treatment operation of Radiata pine to now.

Mark Andrew, Technical Director, Tunnicliffe Timber, New Zealand

10.50am 8.50am

Researching, Developing, & Commercialising an Innovative Timber Treatment Solution

The inside story on a six-year journey culminating in the launch of the FLAMEfixx dFx®, a combined wood preservative (H3) and flame-retardant treated wood product in 2020.

Ron Moon, Managing Director, Wood Modification Technologies, New Zealand

11.10am 9.10am

European Timber Treatment and Modification Innovations suited to local Wood Producers

  • The use of copper naphthenate in an oil solution as a CCA and creosote alternative treatment
  • A novel biocide-free wood protection system using resins – coming to New Zealand in 2021
  • Advances in fully automatic material handling systems for existing and new CCA impregnation plants

Stina Moldrup, Area Manager Marketing, IWT Moldrup, Denmark (live video link)

11.30am 9.30am

Disposing of Treated Wood Waste – case study from South Australia

Lonza & SA Industry presenter (Speaker to be confirmed)

11.50am 9.50am

Technology Showcase

Short presentations on new product innovations.


Lunch & Networking


Short Break


The Mechanical Properties of Australian Softwood Structural Timber

Research covering 13 structural mills, 15,000 pieces and 40,000 tests. Progress update.

Rameez Rameezdeen, Associate Professor, UniSA STEM, Australia

Session: 5: Secondary Manufacturing TechnologiesUnder stress or an industry that’s embracing new technology to improve its efficiencies and international competitiveness
1.00pm 11.00am

Fine-tuning your Batch and Continuous Kiln Drying Operations

Steve Riley, Wood Processing Scientist, New Zealand

Session: 6: The People FactorRedefining and building on your workplace culture, boosting worker engagement, skills retention and recruitment.
1.30pm 11.30am

Tackling the real “Elephant in the Room”

How to attract and retain skills within our workforce.

1. Learning from Generation Z - What can the industry be doing better to attract young people

Sam Von Duve, Mechanical Apprentice, Jubillee Sawmill OneFortyOne, Australia + Jethro Bosch, Apprentice saw-doctor, Tenon Clearwood, New Zealand

2. How One Wood Products Company has set up their own Apprenticeship Programme to Drive their Business

Clarke Rodger, Human Resources General Manager, AKD Softwoods (live video link)

2.00pm 12.00pm

Efficient People = Efficient Business. How to get the most from your people?

Case studies from recent forestry and manufacturing operations that have turned their business around.

Trev Hall, Director, The Lean Hub, New Zealand

2.20pm 12.20pm

H&S & Performance Initiatives to build a Safer Business

Case studies of forestry and wood products companies using incident reviews to successfully boost on-site worker engagement.

Brionny Hooper, Human Factors Scientist, Scion, New Zealand

2.40pm 12.40pm

Re-engaging Your Workforce

Turning around a NZ West Coast sawmilling business by re-invigorating a culture of learning

Nettles Lamont, Managing Director, Conquest Training & Nathan Hoglund, Site Manager, Westco Lumber, New Zealand

3.00pm 1.00pm

Event Summary

3.10pm 1.10pm

Conference Concludes


Sponsor & Exhibitor Opportunities

WoodTECH 2021 will, once again, offer again a unique opportunity for companies involved in supplying products or services to Australasia’s wood processing companies. For our last green-mill focused event, WoodTECH 2019, sponsorship sold out two months before the event ran.

FIEA has earned a well-deserved reputation over 20 years of providing both event sponsors and exhibitors with a unique independent platform for promoting their products and services to forestry and wood products companies in this region. Details for sponsorship are available on request.

For information on planned sponsorship options and benefits for the planned event, or other upcoming FIEA events, please contact Gordon Thomson, Sponsorship Manager, (+64) 7 921 1384 and .

Event Sponsors

Prodetec | Firefly
Lonza Wood Protection
WIDE Trust
Key Knife / Braford Industries

FIEA Partners

Key Knife / Braford Industries
Trimble Forestry
NZ Logger
Atlas Integral
Lonza Wood Protection
Eagle Technology

Media Partners

NZ Logger
Friday Offcuts



Distinction Rotorua Hotel
390 Fenton Street, Rotorua, New Zealand

With its beautiful garden setting and located just minutes from the city centre, Distinction Rotorua Hotel is the perfect place to relax and unwind after a big day at the conference. After the event, this hotel is also a great base to enjoy the wealth of attractions and activities Rotorua has to offer. Free car parking is available at the venue, however, spaces are limited and hotel guests take priority.

Special accommodation rates (All rates are per room per night):

  • Superior Rooms: $145 incl GST | based on single, double or twin share occupancy
  • Deluxe Rooms: $165 incl GST | based on single, double or twin share occupancy
  • Junior Suites: $205 incl GST | based on single or double share occupancy
  • Executive Suites: $235 incl GST | based on single or double share occupancy
Book Accommodation

Registration Rates

Rotoura, New Zealand
(In-Person Event)

Early-Bird Rate (1-2 Attendees)
(Ending 9 July 2021)

NZ$890 + GST

Standard Rate (1-2 Attendees) 
(From 10 July 2021)

NZ$990 + GST

Group (3-5 Attendees)

NZ$795 + GST

Group (6+ Attendees)

NZ$590 + GST

Rotorua, NZ | Register Here
Virtual Online
(Available to Australian and other International attendees)

Virtual Online Rate

NZ$595 + GST*

Virtual Online | Register Here

Registration Details

  • The Conference Rate refers to your attendance in person at the Rotorua conference and exhibitions
  • Virtual Online registrations can be booked. These apply to companies from outside of New Zealand. This will ensure on-line attendance by Australian and other international companies.
  • All prices exclude GST (15%).
  • * For virtual online registrations from outside New Zealand, GST does not apply.
  • A credit card processing fee of 2.9% will be charged for all transactions.
  • Forest Industry Engineering Association (FIEA) Member Discounts of 10-25% apply to the listed Standard Conference Rate. FIEA Membership Details and Benefits can be seen on Membership status and discounts available can be checked by calling our FIEA offices.
  • The Early Bird Rate applies only to the standard two-day conference rate. To be eligible for the Early-Bird Rate, registrations and payment must be received ON or BEFORE Friday 9 July 2021. All 'Early Bird' discounts require payment at time of registration and before the cut-off date in order to receive any discount.
  • Your Conference Registration payment, if attending the event in Rotorua, covers morning and afternoon teas, lunches, refreshments, a conference handbook and post-event access to presentations for a limited time (electronic download for those presentations where presenter approval has been given).
  • For Virtual Online registrations, your registration payment covers live access to all conference presentations, post-event access to presentation PPT’s for a limited time (electronic download of PDF’s for those presentations where presenter approval has been given) and links to all recorded presentations where speaker approval has been given.

COVID-19 related information:

  • The event organiser will work diligently to ensure that all instructions provided by the New Zealand Government and Health Authorities, relating to travel and the running of events because of COVID-19 are strictly adhered to. You can be sure that we will have all measures in place to safeguard your health and safety.
  • It is the responsibility of the sponsor, exhibitor or delegate, if intending to travel to attend the Rotorua conference, to check on all updated health and Government guidelines for any specific entry requirements.
  • If for any reason the Rotorua venue was unable to be used because of COVID-19 restrictions that were imposed by the New Zealand Government, those registered to attend the physical event would be transferred to a new virtual on-line event that would be set up by the organisers.
  • Please refer to our full Terms and Conditions relating to any event related issues around COVID-19.

Cancellation policy:

For cancellations on or before Friday 12 March 2021, a 10% administration fee applies. Cancellations received after 12 March 2021 are non-refundable but are transferrable. Please allow 30 days for refunds to be processed. If you wish to transfer your registration to another individual from within your company, please provide us with at least 24 hours advance notice.

To read our full Terms and Conditions, Click Here.


Contact Us


Since 1998 the Forest Industry Engineering Association (FIEA), a division of Innovatek Ltd, has run an extensive series of technology related events for Australasian forest products companies. Over 200 conferences, trade shows and exhibitions have been run for local companies.

FIEA’s objective is to improve the performance and productive capability of forestry and wood products companies in the region. It is now recognized as one of the most effective information providers for the Australasian forestry & wood products industries.

FIEA Contact Details

  (+64) 7 921 1382
  1800 126 398 (from Australia)

  • Rotorua Office

    Forest Industry Engineering Association
    Building X91, Sala Street, Rotorua 3010, New Zealand
    PO Box 1230,
    Rotorua 3040, New Zealand
    Ph (+64) 7 921 1382

  • Dunedin Office

    Forest Industry Engineering Association
    c/o Distinction Dunedin
    Hotel, 6 Liverpool Street,
    Dunedin 9016, New Zealand
    PO Box 904,
    Dunedin 9054, New Zealand
    Ph (+64) 3 470 1902

Forest Industry Engineering Association: A division of Innovatek Ltd

Contact Form

How can we help?

Feel free to ask a question or simply leave a comment.