Forest Genetics CouncilCongratulations to the Forest Genetics Council for their nomination at the Premier’s Innovation and Excellence Awards ceremony held October 27, 2015 in Victoria.

The awards showcase and celebrate outstanding BC Public Service excellence.

Premier Christy Clarke attended the ceremony to personally recognize finalists from around the province for their professionalism, dedication and innovation in making a difference for BC.

The Forest Genetics Council of British Columbia (FGC) is a multi-stakeholder group that includes representatives from federal and provincial governments, the forest industry and universities.

The FGC’s goals are to enhance the value, resilience and conservation of BC’s forests.

The FGC’s primary outputs are fast-growing and pest-resistant tree seeds which help to boost BC’s timber supply and economy. Since the FGC’s inception, in 1998, over 1.7 billion improved seedlings have been planted in BC.

TimberWest is one of the over 30 partners involved in the Forest Genetic Council and TimberWest staff play important roles in the FGC. Bevin Wigmore, Tree Improvement Manager for TimberWest, sits on the FGC’s coastal technical advisory committee, and Domenico Iannidinardo, VP Sustainability and Chief Forester for TimberWest, is the coastal producers representative and director on the Forest Genetics Council.

TimberWest also operates the Mount Newton Seed Orchard in Saanichton. The seed orchard supplies TimberWest with improved seed for reforestation and makes a significant contribution to the sustainable forest management of the company’s forests.

The Mount Newton Seed Orchard is a unique facility that produces up to 90% of the seed used in reforestation on TimberWest lands.

While the orchard primarily focuses on Douglas Fir, they also produces Western Red Cedar, Western Hemlock and Western White Pine seeds. Surplus seed is sold to other companies that don’t have the appropriate seed to meet their reforestation needs.

Tom Ethier, Assistant Deputy Minister, Ministry of Forest Lands and Natural Resource Operations, nominated the FGC for the award in the category of ‘Organizational Excellence’ because, as Tom described, “BC’s tree improvement program is one of the best in the world and is at the leading edge of developing climate change adaptation strategies.”

Congratulations to everyone involved for their commitment and dedication to BC forests.

You can learn more about the FGC nomination by watching this short video.

To learn more about the Mount Newton Seed Orchard, check out TimberWest’s website.