Opal Australian Paper has revealed that the VicForests situation has continued to create supply challenges for its Maryvale Mill and that “limited [staff] stand downs may become necessary” after consultation on this issue with team members.
The statement comes as VicForests experiences a range of operational difficulties, especially since the Supreme Court ordered stricter rules around the protection of the endangered greater glider and the yellow-bellied glider after it found the government agency failed to adequately protect them.
An ABC report identified that timber industry workers and contractors protested the ruling, with workers at the Maryvale Mill fearing for their jobs as the paper mill needs hardwood to make white paper.
An Opal Australian Paper spokesperson confirmed with Sprinter that the Maryvale Mill is operating but that the ruling is likely to impact future deliveries of state wood as one of its Maryvale Mill paper machines uses some wood supplied by VicForests.
“As a large Latrobe Valley employer, secure, certified wood supply is crucial to Opal Australian Paper’s Maryvale operations,” the spokesperson for the company said.
“We appreciate that VicForests is currently experiencing a range of operational difficulties, which are likely to impact future deliveries of state wood. The current VicForests situation continues to create supply challenges for the Maryvale Mill.
“Unfortunately, limited stand downs may become necessary and we are currently consulting on this issue with our team members. No decisions will be made until the consultation is complete.”
The company also mentioned that these are temporary measures that it needs to put into place while it works through the potential implications of the court decision that was delivered several days ago.
“Our priority is to continue to keep our team members fully updated on the situation as it develops further,” Opal Australian Paper added.
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