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VicForests mill door sales stakeholder strategy
VicForests is overhauling its entire model of timber harvest and sale, in order to improve the returns it creates for the community from the sustainable harvest of native forest. As well as implementing a new auction-based timber pricing model, the company is changing the basic way it sells wood. Instead of selling timber ‘at the stump’ - still standing in the forest – with customers engaging contractors to harvest it and haul it to their mills, VicForests will instead take over all harvest and haulage, selling wood to customers by delivering it directly to their mills. This move will treble the size of VicForests’ current business, and will have major impacts on customers, contractors, and a range of other stakeholders. The controversial political context of forestry means that stakeholder risks present the greatest threat the project’s success. VicForests needed to understand the impacts of its proposed changes, so it could better manage stakeholder risks in moving toward Mill Door Sales (MDS).
The VicForests MDS stakeholder strategy presents a roadmap for engagement by the company in the lead up to implementing MDS. It prioritises key risks, proposes mitigation strategies, and uses open, consultative approaches to find common ground and win-win solutions in the midst of highly polarised, controversial issues.