Every year in Germany, specialists in the hardwood sector meet at the beginning of September for talks involving forestry companies and wood processing representatives. The September 2020 talks highlighted that the pandemic has further complicated a situation marked by suffering forests and sawmills struggling to keep up. Technical unemployment, full warehouses with damaged wood, uncertainties in the regional and export markets, make things hard for the companies in the industry.
Beech trees, already weakened by last year’s large-scale drought, are again particularly affected. This applies to beeches in dry and damp locations. As it is difficult to assess the future volume of damaged timber, and the reaction of the markets, caution is required. What counts above all is to quickly transform damaged wood, early pruning of the over log and rapid skidding in order to limit the loss of quality as much as possible.
Also regarding beech, a reduction in cuts is expected as a result of the disasters. The supply is facing a demand which is currently reduced compared to last year.
There is still constant demand for oak from the woodworking industry, although the sale of poorer qualities can prove to be difficult. Reasonable prices were paid for good qualities in the previous year. The spread of the oak beetle continues to cause concern, causing damage to the wood and thus contributing to the devaluation of oak. In order to prevent this as much as possible, attention should be paid to rapid removal from the forest and spatially separate piling of infested and fresh wood so that not yet infested wood remains free of damage.
Ash wood remains in its own market, which is still mainly supported by exports and is therefore influenced by global political decisions. It is becoming apparent, however, that the supply peak has been exceeded and it is unclear how demand will develop over the season.
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