Commercial Forestry Segments

Commercial forestry is the practice of growing and harvesting trees for various commercial uses, such as lumber, paper, bioenergy, and other forest products. The forestry industry can be divided into several segments which we will describe in our blog post.


Date Posted:

March 16, 2023

Commercial forestry is the practice of growing and harvesting trees for various commercial uses, such as lumber, paper, bioenergy, and other forest products. The forestry industry can be divided into several segments, including:

GFP Blog Milling of Lumber 2

Milling of lumber

Milling of lumber is the process of cutting logs into planks or other desired shapes and sizes. This is typically done using a saw mill, which can be a large industrial machine or a smaller, portable version. The logs are first debarked and then cut into planks using a circular saw blade. The thickness of the planks can be adjusted by adjusting the position of the blade. This process is used to produce lumber for construction, furniture making, and other uses.
GFP Blog Paper and pulp production 2

Paper and pulp production

Paper and pulp production is the process of creating paper and other cellulose-based products from wood. The process begins with the harvesting of trees, which are then debarked and chipped into small pieces. These chips are then cooked in a chemical solution, usually containing sodium hydroxide and sodium sulfide, to break down the lignin that binds the fibers of the wood together. This process is called “digestion” or “cooking”. After digestion, the fibers are washed and screened to remove any remaining impurities. The fibers are then bleached, often using chlorine or chlorine dioxide, to lighten the color of the pulp. The pulp is then formed into sheets on a paper machine, where water is removed by pressing and drying. This process can be used to produce various types of paper, such as newsprint, writing paper, and cardboard.
GFP Blog Wood-based Bioenergy 2

Wood-based bioenergy

Wood-based bioenergy refers to the use of wood as a source of energy, typically in the form of heat or electricity. This can be done by burning wood directly in a boiler or furnace, or by converting it into a biofuel, such as wood pellets or wood chips. The process of converting wood into bioenergy typically involves the chipping or grinding of wood into small pieces and then drying it to a low moisture content. The dried wood is then burned in a power plant to generate electricity or used in a boiler to produce heat. Wood-based bioenergy is considered a renewable energy source because new trees can be planted to replace those that are used for energy production. However, the environmental impact of wood-based bioenergy is still debated, as it can have negative effects on air quality, carbon emissions and biodiversity if not sustainably managed.
GFP Blog Non wood forest products 2

Non-wood forest products

Non-wood forest products (NWFPs) refer to a wide range of products obtained from forests that are not made of wood, such as fruits, nuts, berries, medicinal plants, mushrooms, resins, and so on. These products have been traditionally used by indigenous and rural communities for food, medicine, and other purposes. NW NW NW, NW, NW on, NW, non-wood forest products have gained increasing attention as an important source of income and livelihood for these communities, as well as a potential source of sustainable development. The NW, NW, commercialization of NW non-wood forest products has also been considered as a way to promote conservation and sustainable management of forests. Some examples of non-wood forest products include:
  • Berries and nuts, such as blueberries, raspberries, hazelnuts, and chestnuts
  • Resins and gums, such as resin from pine trees and Gum arabic from acacia trees
  • Medicinal plants, such as ginseng, echinacea, and saw palmetto
  • Fungi and mushrooms, such as shiitake, morels, and chanterelles
  • Wild honey, game animals and fish
  • and other non-timber forest products as rubber, latex, essential oils, and many more.
GFP Blog Timber & harvesting 2

Timber and Harvesting

Timber harvesting and logging is the process of cutting, skidding, and removing trees from the forest for commercial use. This segment of the forestry industry is responsible for providing the raw material for many other segments such as lumber and wood products, pulp and paper production, and biomass and bioenergy.

There are various methods of timber harvesting and logging, depending on factors such as the species of trees, the location of the forest, and the intended use of the harvested wood. Some of the most common methods include:

  1. Clearcutting: This method involves the removal of all trees in a specific area, usually for the purpose of regenerating the forest with a new crop of trees.
  2. Selective cutting: This method involves the selective removal of individual trees or groups of trees, rather than clearcutting an entire area. This method is used when only certain species of trees or sizes of trees are desired.
  3. Thinning: This method involves the removal of a portion of the trees in a forest stand to improve the growth and health of the remaining trees.
  4. Mechanized logging: This method involves the use of heavy equipment such as feller-bunchers, skidders, and forwarders to cut and remove trees from the forest.
  5. Traditional logging: This method involves the manual cutting and removal of trees, often using hand tools such as chainsaws, axes, and horses.

Timber harvesting and logging is typically regulated by government agencies to ensure sustainable forest management and conservation. The forest management plans must be approved and supervised by those agencies, and the logging companies must comply with the regulations and laws on forest management.

GFP Blog Lumber and wood Products 2

Lumber and wood products

Lumber and wood products are products made from wood that have been processed and cut to specific sizes and shapes. This segment of the forestry industry involves the production of dimensional lumber, plywood, veneer, and other wood-based products for use in construction, furniture making, packaging, and other industries.

  1. Dimensional lumber: This is the most common type of lumber produced and is used in construction. Dimensional lumber is cut to specific sizes and is used for framing, flooring, and other structural applications.
  2. Plywood: It is made by gluing together thin layers of wood veneer. It is commonly used in construction, furniture-making, packaging, and other industries.
  3. Veneer: It is a thin layer of wood that is peeled or sliced off a log, and is used to make plywood and other engineered wood products.
  4. Engineered wood products: These are products made from wood fibers and particles that are bonded together with resins. Some examples include particleboard, medium-density fiberboard (MDF), and laminated veneer lumber (LVL).
  5. Wood-based panel products: These are products made from wood fibers and particles that are pressed and glued together. Some examples include fiberboard and hardboard.

The process of producing lumber and wood products typically begins with the sawing of logs into rough lumber, which is then further processed and cut to specific sizes using planers, routers, and other machinery. The quality of the product is usually determined by the quality of the logs and the skill of the sawyer. The lumber and wood product manufacturers must comply with the regulations and standards that are set by government agencies, such as the grading rules, safety regulations, and environmental standards.

Reforestation, afforestation and plantation forestry

Reforestation, afforestation, and plantation forestry are all terms used to describe the planting, growing, and management of forests for commercial purposes. These activities are an important part of the forestry industry and play a crucial role in sustainable forest management.

  1. Reforestation: The process of reforestation refers to the planting of trees on land that has previously been forested, but has been cleared or degraded. The goal of reforestation is to restore the ecological, economic, and social functions of the forest.
  2. Afforestation: The process of afforestation refers to the planting of trees on land that has not previously been forested. This can be done to create new forests, to mitigate the effects of climate change, or to provide other benefits such as soil conservation and carbon sequestration.
  3. Plantation forestry: This is the practice of establishing and managing forests on a large scale, typically for commercial purposes such as timber production, bioenergy, or carbon sequestration. Plantations are often made up of a single species of tree and are managed intensively to maximize growth and productivity.

Reforestation, afforestation, and plantation forestry require careful planning, management, and monitoring to ensure sustainable forest management and conservation. The planting of the new trees should be done with the appropriate species, taking into account the local conditions, the ecological balance, the endangered species and the future market demand. Plantation forestry and afforestation projects are often subject to strict regulations and laws, to ensure that they are carried out in a sustainable and responsible manner, and to avoid negative impact on the environment and the local communities.

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