NEWS & INFORMATION
News Release “WA to cease logging native forests end 2023”
22nd September 2021
On the 8th of September, the McGowan Government announced that logging in the State’s native forests would cease at the end of 2023, without consulting industry or stakeholders. This effectively ends the commercial supply of Jarrah, Marri and other WA native hardwoods to WAFMA (Western Australian Furniture Manufactures Association Inc.) placing most local furniture manufacturing businesses in jeopardy and several thousand employees facing unemployment.
WA’s native forestry ban is not backed up by science or long-term thinking. Institute of Foresters of Australia vice president Dr Michelle Freeman said that while the association welcomed the Government’s commitment to plant 50 million more trees and support ongoing management to improve forest health, the singlemindedness of the decision to end native forestry was flawed...Click here to read the full release
Try a Trade
21st September 2021
The Food, Fibre & Timber Industries Training Council through North Metro TAFE are launching “Try-a-Trade” to promote apprenticeships in the furniture industry. There will be two programs hosted at Balga TAFE each with fifteen students in October and November respectively and WAFMA volunteer employers are requested to help. Evidence suggests that the more opportunities young people have to connect with employers the more likely they are to have successful transitions into training and employment.
Can you spare 1-2 hours of your time on one day?
Here is how you can volunteer
If you could volunteer for any of these opportunities or if you have any other ideas how you could be involved please contact Janine Blake from the FFTITC; email@example.com or 0427 351 027
New WAFMA Member
21st September 2021
Welcoming aboard our newest member, Tanya Cheary of Hue Design Interiors.
A long time WAFMA supporter, Tanya has worked on projects with several WAFMA members and embraces a strong commitment in supplying clients superior quality locally crafted furniture, designed to their requirements.
Tanya has a demonstrated history of successfully designing and co-ordinating in top end residential, commercial jobs and retail projects. This work incorporates bespoke interior & product design, technical drawing, 3D CAD, colour application, project co-ordination & management, sales & liaison.
Tanya adds a new dimension to WAFMA as we now have a successful interior designer in our member mix. Please feel free to contact Tanya and discuss any projects or sales; firstname.lastname@example.org or 0466 888 098.
WAFMA Press Release “Native Forestry Ban”
12th September 2021
Last week the State Government's decided to end native forestry by 2024. This issue is extremely critical to our industry. Additional to supply chain issues, this decision will be severely damaging to many businesses and small regional towns.
We share concerns with other related industries about the lack of consultation and clarity regarding this decision, and question whether this best serves the West Australian people and their environment?
Manufacturing Skills Australia - Scholarship Funding
19th August 2021
Manufacturing Skills Australia is seeking applications from around Australia with a theme of Innovation in manufacturing. If you are working at any level in manufacturing and you are passionate about innovation, they want to help you achieve your goals.
Applicants can apply for between $1,000 and $10,000 to develop their skills and knowledge through research, education and/or training. Applications will be accepted between 1 July 2021 and 31 August 2021
Click here to find out more
Helpful templates for small businesses
18th August 2021
Do you have a Business Plan, Marketing Plan, Emergency Management Plan? There are many businesses who don’t have these plans because of the difficulties in ‘starting’ them. Business.gov.au provides tools and templates to help small businesses improve their management processes. They are free and easy to follow. The templates do the work for you.
Click here to find out more and download these templates and gui
New WAFMA Member
18th August 2021
We welcome Ian Goldfinch WA State Manager of Joyce Foam Products aboard WAFMA as a new member.
Since obtaining the first Australian polyurethane foam production licence in 1953, Joyce has been committed to manufacturing innovative and high-performance foams for a range of applications in the bedding, furniture, medical and industrial sectors. Today, Joyce has offices across Australia and manufactures over 70 grades of foam using the world’s most advanced foam-making technology, VPF. Joyce understand that every business is unique and strive to offer customised solutions to all our customers to help keep them competitive.
You can contact Ian via email: email@example.com and
mobile: +61 427 740632
WAFMA 2021/22 committee elected
28th July 2021
The main function of our recent AGM is for members to nominate and be elected to represent their industry colleagues for the following financial year. Michael D’Andrea was re-elected as President with Bonnie Taylor re-elected as Treasurer and Marketing Manager, Frank Parker also re-elected as Secretary, then Rebecca de Rooy, Phil Oxenborough, Adam Gibson and Ian Goldfinch elected as Committee Members.
These are your members to look after and represent your industry interests so please do not hesitate in contacting them with any queries or concerns. All contact details are situated on the WAFMA website.
Member of the month - Tonkin Designs
22nd June 2021
We welcome Nick Hanson from Tonkin Designs aboard WAFMA and look forward to working with him in forthcoming years. Established in 2016 Tonkin Designs located in Bibra Lake manufacture an extensive range of both residential and commercial outdoor furniture.
Nick supports the Australian supply chain in sourcing native timbers and local materials with his staff believing in exceeding clients expectations. This extends into designing and custom-manufacturing unique pieces for both individual clients and commercial projects around Australia at a cost effective price.
We are all looking forward to meeting Nick and Lisa at our upcoming AGM/Dinner
Australian Made Council
What does "Australian Made" mean and is it actually Australian made?
20th June 2021
The WAFMA President has taken to the Australian Made Council regarding the ridiculously low percentage of local content on office chairs sold in Australia as ‘Australian Made’. In order to qualify as ‘Australian Made’ a product must have undergone its last substantial transformation in Australia. Goods are substantially transformed in a country if . . . . as a result of one or more processes undertaken in that country, the goods are fundamentally different in identity, nature or essential character from all of their ingredients or components that were imported into that country.
The fact of the matter is that complete office chairs are being imported into Australia with just the foam padding and upholstery being added to the manufacturing process locally. This may be only 10% - 20% of the value and certainly no substantial transformation has occurred locally. We congratulate Michael D’Andrea for his article published in the Business News – to read the full blog from Artifex Australia please click here and to read the Business News article please click here.
EXCITING NEWS for apprentices!!
21st May 2021
WAFMA are thrilled to announce we are now offering free memberships! If you are currently undertaking an apprenticeship within our industry and want to be part of a growing association, we’d love to hear from you.
Have your say, network with a great bunch of manufacturers, suppliers, and retailers, and help shape our industry for the future!
You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get you all set up ready for this years AGM Dinner which you are also invited to attend on Wednesday 30th June 2021.
Member of the month - Creative Edge
20th May 2021
We welcome Drew Nutton from Creative Edge in Wangara aboard WAFMA. Drew grew up knowing our industry as his father David has been in our industry since he was just 4 years old. He commenced working on a casual basis for his father when he was 17 then decided to take over the family business when he was 24 eventually buying his father out when he was 32
Drew as now been successfully running his own business for fourteen years and employees eight staff including his secretary Maddy who has been with the business for 32 years. Creative Edge deal with several loyal retailers and interior decorators manufacturing custom sofas, beds and wall panels. We look forward to working with Drew having an active future with WAFMA.
Imported furniture vs Australian made
They speak about the negative social, economic and environmental impacts that purchases of low-cost imported furniture may carry.
It has made quite an influence on social media and is well worth the 5 minute read!
Click here to take a look at the full post.
Member of the month - New Leaf Gallery
WAFMA welcomes Adam Gibson from New Leaf Gallery into our industry association. It is always rewarding seeing new life injected into our industry such as Adam who is passionate about creating long lasting solid timber furniture and fixtures.
Adam initially worked as a saw miller for fourteen years and having worked with most Australian hardwoods gave him a great foundation into our industry. Adam still sources his own logs and has a Lucas Mill for producing timber slabs which he both on sells and also uses for his own furniture production.
For enquires regarding timber slabs or furniture please contact Adam on
0412 871 670 or email@example.com
Australian Made Campaign compliance issues
20th April 2021
Our president Michael D’Andrea has engaged with the Australian Made Campaign Ltd (AMCL) regarding compliance of locally upholstered and assembled imported office chairs. These chairs then are classified as “Australian made” under AMCL policy because a “substantial transformation” has taken place therefore the product is fundamentally different in identity .
Our president disagrees with AMCL policy and their definition of “substantial transformation” and “fundamentally different in identity” as the chair in question is over 80% Chinese made so in most Australians eyes is not Australian made.
We will keep members informed with the progress of this fundamentally important issue for local industry and the Australian public.
Government extends apprenticeship wage subsidy scheme
17th March 2021
The federal government has extended its wage subsidy scheme for apprentices and trainees for another year, in a move it expects will generate 70,000 new positions.
Under the scheme, 50 per cent of the wages of apprentices and trainees are subsidised by taxpayers.
Click here to read the full news article from ABC.
Member of the month - Warwick Fabrics
WAFMA member Warwick Fabrics can only be described as an iconic Australian success story. With a modern warehouse located in Melbourne able to process 1,000,000 metres and 7,000 cuts per day also showrooms located in Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth. Warwick also has extensive international operations in New Zealand, United Kingdom, China, Dubai and India.
However most of us like to linger in local industry history so we thought you would enjoy the early days of Warwick Fabrics Australian operations. You can click here to see the full 50 year story.
Australian Made Council compliance issues
16th February 2021
A WAFMA member has approached the Australian Made Council regarding compliance issues associated with office chairs. A competitor’s chair is imported with only the upholstery (foam and fabric cover) being completed in Australia and yet supports an Australian Made swing tag.
Under the legislation governing the Australian Made Council a product must undergo it’s last substantial transformation in Australia to comply with Australian Consumer Law. The ACCC stated in a recent publication that “adding a fabric seat cover to an imported chair is not an example of substantial transformation.”
All we can say is to be a WAFMA member and use our logo the business must be owned and operated by West Australians with the furniture being locally made, utilising the local supply chain where ever possible.
WAFMA – China suspends imports of W.A native hardwoods
16th February 2021
The latest casualty in China’s trade war with Australia is the import suspension of Western Australian native hardwoods. WA and NSW are the latest states to be affected joining Victoria, Queensland, Tasmania and SA. The issue WAFMA has always had with the export on native hardwoods is the furniture returning to Australia having been constructed from these timbers is then often portrayed by retailers as locally made.
Saw millers are saying that the suspension of imports by China may affect their business viability therefore their ability to supply local markets. WAFMA has no concerns about the suspension of hardwood sales into China but the issue is more complex and somewhat deceiving. Much of China’s timber related industries have relocated to Vietnam however they tend to still be wholly owned and operated by Chinese. This action has been largely taken to avoid U.S tariffs and the general anti-China sentiment in the western world. WAFMA has requested information from the Forest Industries Federation (WA) regarding the volume of hardwood exports to Vietnam but awaits response
New Jarrah - Know your Jarrah
8th February 2021
From the escarpment looking over Perth, to the rugged south west coast, there’s only one place in the world jarrah grows. Its natural strength and durability, coupled with stunning colours makes jarrah a prized timber for all design applications. Using the lighter shades of New Jarrah in furniture, design and building is helping to make a lighter, brighter and more beautiful future for all of us.
The New Jarrah website is a State Government initiative enacted upon by the Forest Products Commission to promote the advantages of using Jarrah in construction and furniture. It is been created to foster awareness, understanding and preference for “New Jarrah” across Australia
To find out more and where to buy, view the New Jarrah website by clicking here.
ACFA award entries are now open!
8th February 2021
Early Bird entries are now open for the ACFA 2021 Industry Awards. The annual national Industry Awards showcases and celebrates industry excellence and now is the time to start preparing your entry.
How to Enter:
The entry process is simple. Review the entry categories detailed on the website. Choose project/s suitable for submission. Project/s must have been completed between 1 July 2019 and 30 June 2021.
Click here for more information.
Member of the month - Artisan furniture Design
Manufacturers of custom built furniture, lounges, modular's and recliners located in Wangara, Artisan Furniture Design have more than 30 years experience and a history of supplying top quality products. They have shared this special story with us regarding recent collaboration with Saba Rose Button Foundation: "Back in 2019 we were approached by Mick and Kirsty Button to manufacture a piece of furniture for them and their 10 year old daughter Saba.It was a very unique build, and the brief was to have a piece that they could wheel throughout their purpose-built home, be fully remotely adjustable and also integrate into the rest of the furniture in a way that Saba was at the same level as the rest of her family for extreme cuddles!
It was a huge pleasure to create this piece and even more rewarding seeing Saba and her sister Bowie hand in hand, asleep together on the first night of the delivery."
28th January 2021
Our prime objective at WAFMA is to promote, support and recognise Western Australian Furniture Manufacturers and the many benefits to buying high quality handcrafted furniture made right here in WA.
We are here to assist our existing members, welcome new members and chat to anyone interested in becoming part of this exciting and creative industry.
A look at 2020
16th December 2020
What a year 2020 has been! We started the year as normal hearing a few news snippets regarding COVID19 then before we barely knew what was happening we were hit with enforced shutdowns. We have been so incredibly fortunate to be living in WA, relatively insulated from this global pandemic. What started off as looking like a disaster of epic proportions for our industry suddenly turned into one of such strength in our cocooned world as the sentiment of buying ‘home grown’ returned.
WAFMA believes the good times will be maintained for the following eighteen months due to a strong domestic economy within WA however Western Australia has always tended to be a boom or bust economy so we recommend members to strengthen their businesses during these good times in preparation for the future.