Wood Recyclers Association (WRA) chairman Geoff Hadfield delivered this stark warning to 22 companies at the organisations recent meeting in Birmingham.
He said: Wood recyclers have to gear up to charge realistic gate fees because of the decreasing price of processed woodchip going to the board mills and other consumers, escalating operating and compliance costs- particularly in the areas of energy, health and safety and environment- and a huge oversupply of material in the market place.
Add to this mix the fact that wood packaging recovery note prices are at rock bottom and we have a situation where gate fees must rise as a result or companies will be going out of business.
While actual prices will vary according to region and circumstance, the WRA gave a range of charges per tonne which it believes reflects current trading conditions.
These are £25-£30 for low grade material, £20 for mixed grades and £0-£10 for clean softwood.
At the meeting, Hadfield also reported that a Waste & Resources Action Programme-funded wood recyclers code of practice was nearing completion. All WRA members have signed up to this and it will also be made available to non-members.
Its aim is to raise management and operating standards across the wood recycling sector, with a wood packaging protocol also set to give the Government and regulatory authorities confidence in the accuracy of wood packaging tonnages claimed.