Supported by the Quebec Wood Export Bureau (QWEB), the Dining Chair Exhibition was held from November 21 to 27 at a gallery in Minami-Aoyama, Tokyo. For the exhibition titled “Isu-mu 25 chairs maple + birch 2016”, students, who are studying design of home and commercial outlets at the Environmental Design Department of Tama Art University, designed and created actual-sized, wooden dining chairs, and at the gallery, 25 chairs with individual characteristics and made with beautiful hard maple and yellow birch produced in Quebec were exhibited. On November 22, a reception was held to award the gold, silver, and bronze prizes from among all the exhibited chairs. Presenting the awards, Claire Deronzier, a Delegate General from the Quebec Government Office in Tokyo, said she was very happy that the exhibition of chairs that use wood representing the province of Quebec is being held and that the solidity and elegance of maple and the softness and ease in processing of birch gave inspiration to many of the designers, and she expressed her gratitude to the people involved. The exhibition project was held for the 6th time this year, and the Quebec side is hoping to continue with it in the future.
Daiken Corporation (Osaka City) had a signing ceremony for the basic agreement to look into making the “Use of a Total Cascade of Lumber” into a business format in Nichinan Town, Tottori Prefecture at the town office. The signing was held with the four parties of Daiken Corporation, Nichinan Town government, Nichinan town Forestry Association, and Orochi Co., Ltd. With this agreement, the four parties established the “Project to Examine the ‘Use of a Total Cascade of Lumber’ in Nichinan Town” (tentative name) and will move ahead with looking into concretely making the business format and discuss suitable methods of use in order to bring out the maximum potential of the forest resources that Nichinan Town develops. Nichinan Town is located in the central part of the Chugoku Mountain region, and forests account for 90% of the town’s area with the forest covering 30,000 hectares (about 20,000 hectares of man-made forests). With the forest industry that uses those forest resources as one of the town’s key industries, the town will put effort into the lumber processing industry such as producing various lumber products, LVL, and woodchip products mainly from the Hinokawa Forest Lumber Complex. On the other hand with the advancement of depopulation and aging population, the maintenance and management, and use of forest resources is falling into a difficult condition.
The Japan North American Lumber Conference held its 52nd board of directors’ meeting on December 6 in Tokyo. At the start of the meeting, Ryozo Ema, the chairman, gave the opening greetings and said, “The first half of this year was in a slumping condition, but from September, precut lumber factories began to move, and activity emerged in the lumber industry including North American lumber. It looks like the amount of demand for North American lumber will almost reach the forecasted amount,” in reviewing the past year. At the meeting, the forecast of demand for North American wood for each region in 2017 based on a survey given to all the branches was announced. The nationwide forecast for North American wood in 2017 showed 2,686,000 m³ for the expected demand for logs decreasing 4.2% compared to the previous year and 2,179,000 m³ for the expected demand for lumber products decreasing 2.7%. The amount of demand for logs for the Chugoku region, where Chugoku Mokuzai and other large-scale lumber factories are located, is the largest with 1,310,000 m³ (5.1% decrease compared to the previous year) followed by the amount of demand for the Keihin region, which includes the Kashima Lumber Factory of Chugoku Mokuzai, with 700,000 m³ (1.4% decrease compared to the previous year). The largest amount of demand for lumber products is expected to be the Keihin region with 900,000 m³ followed by the Hanshin region with 380,000 m³ in 2nd place, the Nagoya region with 280,000 m³ in 3rd place, and the Tohoku region with 239,000 m³.