South African wood treaters and timber product manufacturers can compete on the world stage, in terms of both quality and variety. This is evidenced by the success of Timba Garden Products, a company based in White River, Mpumalanga, which specialises in the manufacture of niche products such as fencing and garden furniture. Over the past five years, it has successfully exported its fencing and wooden dustbins, among other products, to markets in Europe.Owned by Chas Prette John, Timba Garden Products has been operating since 2000 and is a leading supplier of timber products to the nursery industry in South Africa. It sources pine and saligna timber from local Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) accredited plantations and employs local staff. Production is labour intensive as all its products are mainly hand made.
Traditionally, all Timba Garden Products’ timber has been Tanalised C (CCA) treated to SABS specifications. However, the growing demand for Tanalised E treated products in Europe meant that Prette John had to change his production operations to use this preferred timber treatment.
Tanalised E, or Tanalith E, as supplied by Arch Wood Protection, is a copper azole-based wood preservative and is widely used in a number of developed countries for timber in human contact applications.
Prette John approached Arch Wood Protection for assistance last year and Darren Marillier, sales manager for Arch, found an existing pilot plant that would suit Timba Garden Products’ needs.
The plant is of compact design and very operator friendly, running highly efficient operator times. It was installed in March 2011 by Specpipe Construction and commissioned by Arch customer account managers, Daryll Ehrke and Steven Crous. Although small, the plant is ideally suited to companies looking to grow their markets for Tanalised E treated products.
As well as generating new orders from Europe, Timba Garden Products is developing new garden furniture and playground equipment – for which Tanalised E treatment is ideal – for the South African market.
Arch marketing manager, Gerard Busse, says, “The success of Timba Garden Products underlines the wealth of support and know-how that we have available to timber treaters and product manufacturers. Tanalith E is a well-known and widely accepted Arch product and our assistance in respect of Timba’s export programme demonstrates our capability as a conduit – sharing international know-how with the South African market – coupled with our extensive local experience.”