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Why Plant Trees? / Making Money from Farm Forestry / Non-Timber Products
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Non-timber products

There are many alternative tree products that offer potentially significant development, growing and marketing opportunities for Australian forest farmers. Some products, like honey, have large and established markets while for others the markets are small and specialised. Identifying and developing new product markets may be possible at the local level and could be done by farm foresters alone or in small groups. In other cases, large scale research and development projects will be required to refine processing technologies and access international markets. The Federal Government, through the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation, is funding research and development into emerging non-timber product options including pharmaceuticals, oils and other forest products where it is felt that there are prospects for the development of large scale plantings, particularly in low rainfall areas.

New opportunities may also arise from traditional products. For example, although farmers are rarely paid at present for accepting hives on their land this may soon change as apiarists are forced to pay higher fees for access to public native forests or are totally excluded because of the potentially harmful effect of introduced bees on native insects. Some growers are establishing large areas of high quality honey flora in anticipation of being able to sell the nectar and pollen.

Forests may also provide an ideal environment for the production of valuable understorey plants. Some forest owners make additional income from collecting and selling plants that grow naturally in their dense forests such as ferns or epiphytes. Fern farming is well established in some high rainfall areas and is often an ideal complement to timber production. There is also a small ornamental market for moss covered logs and lichens.

Bush tucker
Industrial products
Eucalyptus oil
Tree seed and propagation material
Nut trees
Christmas trees

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