It is rumoured that the team who researched rosewood usage prior to bringing in these changes, did not know or take into account rosewood usage in musical instruments and how integral it is to the industry, as this restriction was designed to target the burgeoning rosewood furniture market in China. We and everyone else are stuck with these demands that were forced on us with no consultation. Never in CITES history have they brought in restrictions like this so fast, and then applied rules to the application process. The entire industry is up in arms. Everyone is effected.
So how has this impacted production with us at Ormsby Guitars since we don’t use rosewood in our GTR range?
As many readers would know, it has caused significant delays in production of our instruments because, despite not using the now restricted species of woods at all, our supply of chosen woods for production are stuck in shipping containers with the newly restricted woods, and thus, WMI cannot readily access them to commence construction of our guitars. Of the six containers in transit to our builders WMI prior to new CITES regulation coming into effect, two have been released. Unfortunately there also seems to be a haphazard approach (not WMI’s fault) to this as paperwork is not being approved in sequence of when it was filed, meaning containers that have been waiting longer for approval aren’t necessarily being released accordingly. That said, WMI are doing everything they can to manage this situation. Additionally, I personally purchased ebony to have shipped to WMI four weeks ago, to avoid any more delays. The seller was quite happy to take our payment, before advising us his supply for us was on back-order after everyone moved from rosewood to ebony, so it’s back to square one.
As you can imagine, this is incredibly challenging and stressful for us here at Ormsby Guitars. We have stores worldwide begging to sign on in new regions that we cannot commit to, and our network of incredible distributors who desperately want more guitars from us cannot get stock. In Australia alone I have heard of a certain large guitar company that has 6 containers of guitars sitting in barges off of Sydney since February because the guitars contain rosewood. Another large guitar company sent a container to Australia full of strings, with two custom ordered guitars, that happen to have rosewood necks. They’ve experienced 5 months of delays in processing so far, strings included! CITES Australia had four staff until one went on leave early in the year. They report 'paperwork has increased 5 fold'. At the core of it though, you, our supportive global community of musicians and clientele are being left in limbo by external forces that have demonstrated very little consideration for the industry you partake in, and one which brings you much creative pleasure. The paperwork for our runs are expected any day now. We will continue to keep you updated as best as possible with production timelines. Your patience in this matter is sincerely appreciated.
- Ormsby Guitars