Dairy and Meat have all had their periods of change and adaption to international markets in recent years. With a lower profile than farmer orientated markets, you could be excused for not recognising the major changes happening in the Timber industry, but the finishing industry looks nothing like it did 20 years ago.. A wall of timber nearing milling viability would suggest boom times for the industry but market dynamics mean that only the best of breed can compete with the bulk log export trade and add value to the raw product locally. One such mill in Hawkes Bay is doing exactly that, employing 400 staff and creating 5.4% of the local GDP along the way.
The Pan Pac Forest Products Pacific site sits just north of Napier and is a recognisable landmark with its plume of water vapour. From its beginnings in the 1970’s the site has been in a constant state of change as it evolves its products, process and markets. The now 100% Japanese owned company is an impressive operation and the engineering team were justifiably proud to put their operation on show when the Maintenance Society bought its Kaeser Compressors Network Evening series back to Hawkes Bay in May.
Engineering Manager Barry Edmundson opened up the evening before his team of area engineers guided the attendees around the sawmill and pulp operations. The shock loading of the massive logs impressed the group and gave an insight into the engineering and maintenance issues this industry has to deal with, whilst the pulp operation was a display of continuous improvement in action. Attendees marvelled at the massive electric drives and were unsurprised to learn that Pan Pac is a Top 10 electricity user. With such intensive processing in action, the lack of vibration, noise and mess was notable.
The MESNZ Kaeser Compressors Network Evenings are hosted to showcase local operations and provide networking opportunities for engineers across all regions of New Zealand. The evenings offer the opportunity to take a look at the host operation and discuss common issues and solutions in a relaxed after work environment. Open to interested members of the public, the nights are well patronised. There is no cost to attend and non-MESNZ can attend up to 2 meetings. Evenings are constantly being planned. Readers can find the latest schedule by going to http://www.mesnz.org.nz/activities/network-evenings/
The Maintenance Engineering Society is active across New Zealand, providing opportunities for maintenance engineers and manufacturing operations to network and share innovations and experiences; both at a national level at their annual national conference or at these regional events. The 2018 National Maintenance Engineering Conference will be held at the Energy Events Centre, Rotorua on November 13-15