As the wood treatment industry in South Africa continues to face the challenges posed by twilight treaters and ensuing compromised wood treatment products, Lonza believes that wood preservative manufacturers need to ensure that they have sufficient safeguards to maintain product quality and the reputation of the industry at large.

The wood treatment industry in South Africa continues to face the challenges. Image credit: Lonza

The wood treatment industry in South Africa continues to face the challenges. Image credit: Lonza

“Without these safeguards, wood treatment chemicals face the risk of being compromised by the time they reach the treatment plant, which could result in a breakdown of trust between a supplier and customer,” says JJ du Plessis, business manager at Lonza Wood Protection South Africa.

“Tanalith preservative is a globally recognised brand associated with quality and the continued trust in the brand is vital to Lonza. Therefore, we are actively playing our part to safeguard the reputation of the Tanalith brand and our customers from the adverse impact of compromised wood treatment chemicals,” Du Plessis adds.

Lonza’s quality control management system calls for extensive product testing from manufacturing through to strategic field testing while  en route to customers to keep drivers accountable. “We are proud to say that to date we have not experienced any incident of a compromised product being delivered to a customer and we are confident that with these safeguards in place and regular reviewing thereof, we will keep it that way,” he adds.

According to Murray Hibbs at Outpost Treated Timbers, this hands-on approach to quality control and customer satisfaction won him over as a customer.

“In an industry that strives for accuracy, Lonza has made every effort to help us maintain a plant that treats accurately with a quality product. My only regret is not having made the move to Lonza sooner,” says Hibbs.

Outpost Treated Timber specialises in the treatment and supply of CCA treated gum poles, droppers, and laths. The company is ACT certified (African Certification and Testing) and all products carry the ACT quality stamp to ensure the highest quality. This emphasis on performance excellence based on quality chemicals that meet the prescribed standards, led to Outpost appointing Lonza as their CCA supplier.

“We are excited to welcome Outpost Treated Timbers to the Tanalith customer family. Tanalith has been relied upon for more than 60 years and we believe this is the start of another long-standing customer relationship,” said du Plessis.

“Lonza has been superb in their support and genuine interest in the running of our plant. Gareth has been helpful with us getting established as a new client and is always quick and thorough in answering any questions. It is great to know that the backup is there,” affirms Hibbs.

Lonza also recently fitted a bulk storage tank, which has been a huge improvement to the plant, says Hibbs. “It was professionally installed in a few hours, with no disruption to our production. This has made life a lot easier, it is safe and secure and again lends itself to accuracy in operations.”

During one of the deliveries, Outpost gained a first-hand experience of Lonza’s on-the-ground customer service when a damaged drum seal was detected while off-loading.

Du Plessis explains: “We realised that the seal could have broken at any point during the delivery and although it was impossible to determine when it happened, we immediately drove to Outpost to collect a test sample. The test result was exactly as per the Certificate of Analysis, which provided Outpost with the immediate assurance that the stock had not been compromised.”

In line with Outpost’s commitment to performance excellence, Lonza introduced its Tan-Treat Quality Support System, which is the only IT product in the industry with a 5-year proven track record of delivering cost savings on consumption, performance excellence and efficiency improvements.

“This ‘quality through technology’ product also forms an integral part of our commitment to building long-standing customers relationships through holistic value-added services. With no comparable product on the market, Tan-Treat has quickly gained momentum and has more than 32 subscribed users across the wood supply chain enjoying its benefits,” remarks du Plessis.

Hibbs shared his experience of the product, “Tan-Treat has made record keeping efficient and easy. We now have critical information literally at our fingertips, which means that we can be sure of maintaining the standard we are proud of. Lonza is truly a company backed by integrity and I am proud to be associated with them,” concludes Hibbs.