This one day workshop will provide you with the tools you need to establish gains in Productivity, Quality, Cost, Safety, and Morale.

A positive approach to continuous improvement in your business will result in significant gains! Click here to hear how it worked for Mitsui Homes Canada Ltd. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5d268LAFGlM

This workshop will provide you with methods to conduct Continuous Improvement activities. Through a “Learn by Doing” approach, participants will conduct a practice exercise in tracking internal quality, setting measurements, establishing standards and leadership.

Date/Time: September 17, 7:30am-4:00pm

Location: Morgan Creek Golf Course, 3500 Morgan Creek Way, Surrey

To register, Click here

For more information, click here

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Lean Technical Mission – October 27-31, 2013, Toronto

Posted by Rumin Mann
August 20th, 2013

Build your company’s strategy for economic growth and sustainability!
Join FPInnovations this October and tour seven innovative and leading-edge Lean Manufacturing Companies, which includes the Toyota Manufacturing plant in Cambridge, Boeing Canada,and Duha both in Winnipeg.

Now more than ever, companies need to look outside to learn what others are doing differently. This is an exclusive opportunity for participants to see, learn and share innovative technologies, processes and manufacturing best practices.

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This event is the annual meeting of the International Research Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction’s Working Commission W18 on Timber Structures. This important annual meeting brings together internationally-known expert researchers from the field of timber building, and is a forum where new developments in technologies, products and construction techniques are often first introduced, later finding their way into building codes around the world. The conference has been held in various international locations and was last in Vancouver in 1997.

This year’s event is organised by UBC’s Timber Engineering and Applied Mechanics group and the Centre for Advanced Wood Processing, and will provide an opportunity for practitioners to participate in a 4-day event in which the latest scientific research on timber construction will be presented and discussed. Presentations will take place in the convenient location of UBC’s downtown campus at Robson Square. The conference includes an opening reception, a conference dinner, an evening dinner cruise, and a day of technical tours visiting prominent buildings in the Lower Mainland.  The expected attendance is approximately 80 people. A list of accepted presentations is available on the CIB W18 website.

REGISTRATION INFORMATION can be found at http://www.rz.uni-karlsruhe.de/%7Egc20/IHB/cib_information.pdf

This event is sponsored in part by Forestry Innovation Investment.

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Think60 Event: How to Get More Done in Less Time

Posted by Rumin Mann
August 20th, 2013

How often do you wish you had an extra hour in your day? Join us September 19th as we learn the secrets of getting more done in less time, presented by Studiothink’s guest speaker, Rich Scott. Rich is the owner of Clarity Business Strategies and an award-winning business coach and speaker. He works with owners and entrepreneurs to develop strategies and processes that will increase your revenue and grow your business. Seats are limited so reserve your free spot today.

Date: Thursday, Sept. 19 4-5pm

Location: Surrey, BC

Cost: Free

RSVPwww.studiothink.com/events

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Minister tours ‘leading edge’ company

Posted by Rumin Mann
August 20th, 2013

Castanet News – August 14, 2013 

Steve Thomson, minister of forests, lands and natural resource operations, toured Structurlam’s Okanagan Falls manufacturing plant on Tuesday. At the end of the tour led by Structurlam’s president Bill Downing, he had nothing but praise for the plant’s operations.

“It is a real pleasure to be here to help celebrate your investment and innovation,” he said. “You are on the leading edge here and this is  great news for the province and the forest sector.”

Structurlam recently expanded to allow for increased production of its cross-laminated timber panels, a solid wood product that offers a lighter-weight alternative to concrete in commercial construction.

It is currently one of only two companies in Canada to manufacture the building product. It also exemplifies the province’s Wood First Initiative,  introduced in 2009, to promote BC wood in commercial construction, according to President Bill Downing.

“Wood has been enjoying a renaissance in the commercial construction market, and thanks to the things like the Wood First Initiative and the ongoing collaboration between industry and government, we are opening up markets around the world for commercial structural applications for homegrown wood products,” he said.

Click here to read the entire article

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BC Wood set to host 10th Global Buyers Mission

Posted by Rumin Mann
August 20th, 2013

Trade Sense – Aug 4, 2013

This September 5-7th, BC Wood Specialty Group will be hosting the 10th Global Buyers Mission at Whistler, BC. The GBM is an annual three-day networking and trade show program that brings pre-qualified buyers of wood products from around the world together with Canadian suppliers of lumber and finished building materials.

This year there will be some 700+ invited attendees, a number that has grown from 100 since the first GBM in 2004. At that time, incoming buyers were solely from the US. Now, as international buyers get ready to once again meet value-added wood producers from across Canada, that number has grown to almost 20 countries.

The Global Buyers Mission continues to be one of the best business-building events in Canada for wood products manufacturers interested in growing their export market opportunities. Indeed, this is the most cost-effective way to get producers from across BC and Canada to get their products in front of qualified buyers.According to the BC Wood Specialties Group website, pre-qualified wood products buyers from last year’s GBM came from the US, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Taiwan, Vietnam and the EU, to name just a few. This year there will be even more countries represented.

Besides export sale opportunities, this event allows attendees to develop new business relationships with local architects, designers, developers, and other exhibiting wood products companies.

Click here to read the entire article

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Ministry of Advanced Education News Release – July 23, 2013

Students in B.C.’s thriving wood industry will be able to build on their expertise through two new master programs in engineering to be offered by UNBC at the new Wood Innovation and Design Centre (WIDC) in Prince George, Advanced Education Minister Amrik Virk announced today.

A one-year, course-based master of engineering in integrated wood design will train students in technical specializations such as wood structure engineering, engineering for sustainable energy, and forest product engineering. It will be complemented by a thesis-based master of science in wood-related engineering research. The new programs will advance B.C.’s Wood First agenda.

“Our government is developing real-world skills that are aligned with labour demand,” said Virk. “The two wood-engineering master degrees at UNBC will let students gain the education and skills needed in a changing labour market, while maintaining B.C.’s position as a world leader in wood technology.”

The Ministry of Advanced Education is providing up to $466,000 this year to fund start-up costs. The first $237,000 will be provided immediately to assist with faculty and student recruitment, curriculum development and other components needed to start a new program. Once the programs are established, they will add up to 36 full-time equivalent student spaces.

The new programs will be housed at the new WIDC in downtown Prince George. Construction of the centre started recently and is expected to be completed by fall 2014. Academic and industry partnerships and programs are a key part of the design centre and will bring together builders, architects, designers and engineers to advance the commercialization of value-added wood-building and design products.

Click here to read the entire article

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Notice of BC Wood’s AGM

Posted by Brian Hawrysh
August 20th, 2013

BC Wood Specialties Group 2013 Annual General Meeting
9:30 – 10:15 AM, Thursday, September 5th, 2013

Whistler Conference Centre

BC Wood will be holding its’ 2013 Annual General Meeting on Thursday, September 5th, 9:30 AM at the Whistler Conference Centre in Whistler, British Columbia. All BC Wood members are encouraged to attend.

To register or for more information, please contact me directly at bhawrysh@bcwood.com or by phone at 604-882-7100 (toll free 1-877-422-9663). We look forward to seeing you in scenic Whistler, BC for BC Wood’s Annual General Meeting on September 5th, 2013.

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Asia Market Update – Fall Shows in China and Japan

Posted by Jim Ivanoff
August 6th, 2013

Just a reminder, BC Wood is gearing up for our fall shows in Asia. From October 23rd to 25th, we will be simultaneously participating in the legendary Japan Home and Building Show in Tokyo and the China International Exhibition on Housing Industry in Beijing, targeting the emerging market of wood framed construction.

The JHS is a great show for BC Wood members producing millwork, cabinetry, engineered wood, timber frame homes, log homes, 2×4 packaged homes, as well as reman and structural lumber. BC Wood’s Japan Office will once again be organizing a large pavilion on behalf of the Canadian wood industry for this event. This is a great opportunity for members to take advantage of the hot Japanese housing market.

The CIEHI offers the best opportunity in China for Canadian companies looking to export: engineered wood products, timberframe packages, packaged 2×4 and log structures, WRC outdoor products, as well as finishing materials. Its main exhibits include:

  1. Wooden architecture: wooden houses, vacation cabins, wood gazebos & pergolas, and light wood frame & heavy timber structures;
  2. Wooden structural materials;
  3. Wooden structures and equipment; and
  4. Other wood materials: flooring, decking, fencing, stairs, outdoor furniture, etc. Landscape planning, construction, and maintenance: landscape design, golf course design and construction, green roofs, tourism development planning, etc.

Those interested in learning more about either show should contact Jim Ivanoff at ivanoff@canadawood.jp

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Advertising/Sponsorship Opportunities at the GBM

Posted by Randi Walker
August 6th, 2013

Want more than your fair share of attention from delegates at the GBM this year? There are a few spots left for Gift/Prize sponsors. Click herefor details and registration. We have one more week for you to get in on advertising in the Mission Program Guide. Click here for the ad specifications and costs. I could still use the pens for the delegate kits, or you could make a really big impression and sponsor the first drink at the Roundhouse on Thursday evening!

Don’t forget, you can also join the Wednesday night Harbour Cruise with over 100 of our international Buyers, aboard the MV Harbour Princess! An excellent opportunity for you to meet the Buyers prior to their arrival in Whistler. This event is open to all industry members (you do not need to be an exhibitor to attend this event). For more information and registration details, click here.

We have many opportunities available for you to get attention and exposure, whether you are targeting in incoming international buyers, our manufacturing exhibitors, or architects and builders. We have some ideas, but you might have some too! Give me a call and we can find the right thing to fit your budget. 604-882-7100 or toll free at 1-877-4BCWOOD.

(FYI – you do not need to be an Exhibitor to be a sponsor or advertiser)

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Spotlight: Surrey Cedar

Posted by Rumin Mann
August 6th, 2013

Surrey Cedar opened its doors in 1979 as a cedar hip and ridge cap remanufacturer. By expanding into different cedar product lines and exceeding buyers’ expectations, the company saw steady growth over its first two decades. That all changed in 2003. A young, ambitious entrepreneur saw huge opportunity in the humble family business and set aside other career aspirations to take on the challenge of growing a small mill into a major cedar distributor. In the 10 years since Sam Bath took over the company, Surrey Cedar has experienced extraordinary growth and expansion throughout the world. As a testament to his leadership, they currently source lumberyards on every continent – other than Antarctica.

“Business isn’t about making a quick buck,” says Sam, as he stops to look out his office window at the busy mill, “it’s about believing whole-heartedly in what you’re doing. When people buy Western Red Cedar, they’re not looking for just any lumber – they want the best. Knowing that you produce something that is appreciated and admired all over the world is awesome. Here in BC, we have the best trees in the world, and I’m a small part in making sure the rest of the world enjoys this beautiful wood as much as we do.”

For more information, please visit www.surreycedar.com

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Specifier Program Update

Posted by Roy Manion
August 6th, 2013

Well, as we continue to enjoy a magnificent summer, activity here at BC Wood, like the weather, continues to be hot as we prepare for the architect program at the GBM and simultaneously continue on with our activity in the Specifiers Program. Since our last Wood Connections, we have held 3 lunch & learn sessions which is quite unusual for this time of year but due to requests by both industry and architect firms, the activity continues to be quite brisk.

Architect Institute of America (AIA):

As mentioned previously, we received notice from the Architect Institute of America (AIA) that BC Wood has been approved as a Registered Provider. However, we also had to complete a minimum of 8 hours of “Prerequisite Training education”, that we have now done. We are now in the process of submitting courses to AIA that we, along with industry, are planning to present in the near future – with the GBM seminars being at the top of our list. Once approved, all AIA registered architects will be able to earn credits for attending.

Alberta Association of Architects (AAA):

We are still awaiting approval from the AAA to become a Registered Provider. We have submitted all the necessary information (and paid our fees) and are now playing the waiting game. Our most immediate benefit of being an approved Registered Provider for AAA would again be the GBM where any attending architects that are registered with the AAA can gain their Alberta Architect credits along with their AIBC and AIA credits.

Skwachays Lodge in Vancouver

We have run this article over the past 2 Wood Connections and this will be our last time. Normally, we would only run this type of article once but as it is such a great cause – and opportunity for some manufacturers – we have decided to run it once again. If you are interested in assisting First Nations in a very worthwhile endeavour and at the same time develop a relationship with six of Vancouver’s leading Interior Designers then read on.

There is a renovation that is taking place at Skwachays Lodge in Vancouver. The plan is to re-position the lodge as Canada’s only Aboriginal arts hotel. Once completed, guests can immerse themselves in First Nations culture by staying in an arts hotel, having breakfast in a find arts gallery and perhaps participating in a workshop with the artist who created his room. To accomplish this, six aboriginal artists are teaming up with six of Vancouver’s leading Interior Designer firms with each team tasked with designing and furnishing 3 rooms. For their part, the Interior Designers are donating their services and are now soliciting donations from BC’s furniture, millwork and cabinet industry in the form of a piece of furniture, a cabinet or a vanity as part of the renovation. They are not seeking large volumes from a single manufacturer but rather that multiple manufacturers become involved which is why the request for donations of just a single piece. All those who do donate will then have the opportunity of meeting and working with the various designer firms.

The first of these opportunities will be on August 8th when Skwachays Lodge will be hosting a meet and greet event. Attending will be all the Interior Designer firms along with the aboriginal artists. This will be a thank you party for all those that have donated time, money or goods and also a way to introduce them to most of the Interior Design firms that do hospitality design in Vancouver.

If you wish to become involved in this project or just require additional information, please contact Vicki Pearson of Porada Design Group atVicki@poradadesign.com myself at rmanion@bcwood.com

As always, should you want more information on any aspects of the Specifiers Program please let me know by contacting me at rmanion@bcwood.com.

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This one day workshop will provide you with the tools you need to establish gains in Productivity, Quality, Cost, Safety, and Morale.

A positive approach to continuous improvement in your business will result in significant gains! Click here to hear how it worked for Mitsui Homes Canada Ltd. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5d268LAFGlM

This workshop will provide you with methods to conduct Continuous Improvement activities. Through a “Learn by Doing” approach, participants will conduct a practice exercise in tracking internal quality, setting measurements, establishing standards and leadership.

Date/Time: September 17, 7:30am-4:00pm

Location: Morgan Creek Golf Course, 3500 Morgan Creek Way, Surrey

To register, Click here

For more information, click here

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Companies can achieve higher cost effectiveness by having processing standards in place. Documented standards reference the best way to perform a process and capture the knowledge that is unique to each company. When best practices are captured, a company can:

  • Increase its productivity
  • Lower rework costs and waste
  • Reduce training time
  • Create repeatability

Many quality programs require Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) for certification; however the documentation process to create these SOP’s can be long and costly.  Best manufacturing practices have provided industry with a number of different formats to create operational documents for your manufacturing practices.

In the webinar, FPInnovations will present one practical documenting practice as well as share their knowledge of the key elements needed to create effective standards for your operation and help your business succeed.

Click onthe link below before August 15th, 2013 to register for this freewebinar and find out how you can benefit from this information.

https://www.eply.com/operational-documents_aug15

This webinar is hosted by FPInnovations.

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This event is the annual meeting of the International Research Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction’s Working Commission W18 on Timber Structures. This important annual meeting brings together internationally-known expert researchers from the field of timber building, and is a forum where new developments in technologies, products and construction techniques are often first introduced, later finding their way into building codes around the world. The conference has been held in various international locations and was last in Vancouver in 1997.

This year’s event is organised by UBC’s Timber Engineering and Applied Mechanics group and the Centre for Advanced Wood Processing, and will provide an opportunity for practitioners to participate in a 4-day event in which the latest scientific research on timber construction will be presented and discussed. Presentations will take place in the convenient location of UBC’s downtown campus at Robson Square. The conference includes an opening reception, a conference dinner, an evening dinner cruise, and a day of technical tours visiting prominent buildings in the Lower Mainland.  The expected attendance is approximately 80 people. A list of accepted presentations is available on the CIB W18 website.

REGISTRATION INFORMATION can be found at http://www.rz.uni-karlsruhe.de/%7Egc20/IHB/cib_information.pdf

This event is sponsored in part by Forestry Innovation Investment.

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Energy-efficiency certification comes to multi-family homes

Posted by Rumin Mann
August 6th, 2013

Calgary Herald – July 31, 2013

Built Green Canada has branched out with a new plan for energy efficiency in multi-family development. Since 2003, the third-party national certification program has offered builders a rating based on the construction methods and materials used in single-family homes.

In June, Built Green Canada launched its High-Density Program, which certifies energy efficiency in wood-frame construction of residential structures three-and-a-half storeys and taller in Alberta.

“The same principles we built our single-family program on were applied to HD [high density],” says Built Green Canada executive director Jenifer Christenson.

Ratings are based on a checklist that includes use of materials such as energy efficient furnaces, air conditioners, appliances, windows, and lighting options, plus water-saving toilets, low-flow showers and faucets.

A home’s energy efficiency is rated bronze, silver, gold or platinum, which is the highest.

Built Green had a multi-storey and residential tower program in place for three years before creating its High-Density Program, which has been in a pilot phase since 2011.

Click here to read the entire article

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Globe and Mail – July 20, 2013

In the design world, nature and artifice are often locked in a complex dance, designers and architects frequently struggling to reconcile the demands of contemporary life with the timeless beauty of natural materials. George Nakashima, the Japanese-American “woodworker” with a globe-spanning career, was among the first modern craftsmen to address this challenge head-on. Beginning in the 1940s, he sought to make furniture that combined contemporary attitudes, traditional craft and ancient timber. And by any standards he succeeded.

Over the next month or so, the Toronto boutique Mjolk is hosting the first-ever exhibition in Canada from the Nakashima Studio. The show pairs Nakashima designs with work in ceramic, wood and metal by five contemporary Japanese artisans. It is a useful juxtaposition, as Nakashima works – still produced today under the direction of his daughter, Mira – draws on a Japanese reverence for nature and that culture’s traditional respect for craftsmanship.

“The respect for the natural form of wood is very Japanese,” Mira Nakashima says from her family’s home and workshop outside of Philadelphia. “Dad said that he thought he was a Japanese Druid. Druids worshipped the trees. But the Japanese Shinto tradition is very similar – that very deep respect for the things of nature and the forms of nature. Dad thought it was in his blood.”

George Nakashima was born an American, in Washington State in 1905, but he set out on a path that gave him a rare opportunity to learn about his ancestral homeland. After studying architecture at the University of Washington, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, he moved to Tokyo to work for Antonin Raymond, a Czech-American architect who became a force for modernism in Japan. “While in the Raymond office, he studied Japanese building,” Nakashima’s daughter says. “They didn’t really have architecture as a profession at that time; the building was mostly wood construction and the master carpenters were the ones who really knew everything.

Click here to read the entire article

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Notice of BC Wood’s AGM

Posted by Brian Hawrysh
August 6th, 2013

BC Wood Specialties Group 2013 Annual General Meeting
9:30 – 10:15 AM, Thursday, September 5th, 2013

Whistler Conference Centre

BC Wood will be holding its’ 2013 Annual General Meeting on Thursday, September 5th, 9:30 AM at the Whistler Conference Centre in Whistler, British Columbia. All BC Wood members are encouraged to attend.

To register or for more information, please contact me directly atbhawrysh@bcwood.com or by phone at 604-882-7100 (toll free 1-877-422-9663). We look forward to seeing you in scenic Whistler, BC for BC Wood’s Annual General Meeting on September 5th, 2013.

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Asia Market Update – Fall Shows in China and Japan

Posted by Jim Ivanoff
July 17th, 2013

Just a reminder, BC Wood is gearing up for our fall shows in Asia. From October 23rd to 25th, we will be simultaneously participating in the legendary Japan Home and Building Show in Tokyo and the China International Exhibition on Housing Industry in Beijing, targeting the emerging market of wood framed construction.

The JHS is a great show for BC Wood members producing millwork, cabinetry, engineered wood, timber frame homes, log homes, 2×4 packaged homes, as well as reman and structural lumber. BC Wood’s Japan Office will once again be organizing a large pavilion on behalf of the Canadian wood industry for this event. This is a great opportunity for members to take advantage of the hot Japanese housing market.

The CIEHI offers the best opportunity in China for Canadian companies looking to export: engineered wood products, timberframe packages, packaged 2×4 and log structures, WRC outdoor products, as well as finishing materials. Its main exhibits include:

  1. Wooden architecture: wooden houses, vacation cabins, wood gazebos & pergolas, and light wood frame & heavy timber structures;
  2. Wooden structural materials;
  3. Wooden structures and equipment; and
  4. Other wood materials: flooring, decking, fencing, stairs, outdoor furniture, etc. Landscape planning, construction, and maintenance: landscape design, golf course design and construction, green roofs, tourism development planning, etc.

Those interested in learning more about either show should contact Jim Ivanoff ativanoff@canadawood.jp

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It is hard to imagine that a country that is so famous for its go-go days in the 1980s when the Canadian Embassy in Tokyo was supposedly worth more than all of Western Canada, could turn into a population that expected only price decreases, but that is exactly what happened to Japan after the bubble burst. The primary goal of “Abenomics” is to once and for all break this mindset and that is what seems to be happening. Finally!

This has particularly been a problem for the housing industry. With recovering U.S. housing starts suddenly creating stronger demand for lumber just as the Yen began to weaken, Japanese clients faced a 1-2 punch of increasing import prices. This situation has been complicated by the fact that the housing market is the strongest it has been in at least five years, yet end-users were not accepting increases in prices. However, as consumers are now seeing rising prices for everything from toilet paper to cheesecakes, the taboo of increasing prices to home buyers seems to have been broken. Large domestic building product manufacturers are pushing the price increase on to builders and the strong demand for housing is allowing the builders to pass increases on to their customers.

According to a recent article in the Nikkei Newspaper, this change in mindset is also affecting overall consumption patterns. In the post-war period, consumers were driven by a need to keep up with their neighbours, but this switched to consuming as a way to show-off during the bubble economy. Once the bubble burst, this was replaced by a desire to buy the cheapest products possible. This changed around 2000 to “cost-performance” based purchases that emphasized the best quality possible for the lowest price possible which is what led to Uniqlo’s meteoric rise. And now? A recent study has shown that people have returned to buying luxury items, but as a way to improve the quality of their lives and not to show-off as was the case in the 80’s. This return to quality is being seen and in various retail spaces with products that offer unique functions taking centre stage, rather than the cheapest sale items.

Talking to builders, this change in mindset is also starting to affect home buyers. Better insulation and higher earthquake resistance are common demands after 3/11, but better and more comfortable interiors are also becoming more important to consumers. Even amidst the current rush to build spec housing, you can see houses going up with more distinctive exteriors around Tokyo. Hopefully, this changing mindset will continue to drive the housing markets, even as demand begins to level off. Better quality homes in Japan will mean even more opportunities for Canadian wood products.

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