Women in Forestry

There’s a lot of talk that women can do anything, equal rights and the rest of it. We just thought we’ll give them a chance out in the forest, work with them slowly just to get them bush fit and see where they can fit within the forestry industry,” says CNI Forestry Management’s Joe Taute of the company’s new all-women crew.


The day we visit Kaingaroa Forest, eight of the 11-women crew are doing regen pulling to rid sites of trees that are sprouting from stumps. Though they had only been on the job a month at the time, Health & Safety recruitment officer, Joe says the new approach was already paying off.


“Though not impossible, it’s getting harder and harder to employ Kiwi boys because of the drug problems or they just can’t get up in the morning,” he says.


“The work ethic from the guys is not there – the getting up in the morning, the actual doing the work, the sense of values and wanting to work. It’s across the board with all of forestry, not just silviculture.


“But these girls, they’re enthusiastic. They’re all turning up. They all say hi in the morning and they’re still smiling at the end of the day.


“I was talking to a cousin of one of the girls yesterday. She gets home, she’s got blisters on her feet, she’s tired you know, but she still gets up in the morning and that’s what they’re all about. At this stage we’re definitely seeing a different work ethic with the women than the men because they are turning up 100%.” ..


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