- The Irish timber market appears to have escaped the impacts of COVID-19 to date, there has been no decline in demand and the market remains buoyant, with a strong demand for roundwood.
- The delays and shortages in felling licences and the resulting shortage in harvesting operations may have assisted in maintaining strong demand for roundwood.
- Timber markets Q2 2020 (April to June):
|All prices (ex VAT) quoted roadside for conifers|
|Product Type||Length||Diameter||Price € /tonne|
|Pulp||3 m||< 7cm||28 – 32|
|Stakewood||1.6 m||> 8cm < 15 cm||40 -44|
|Palletwood||2.5 m||> 14 cm||46 – 50|
|3.1 m||52 – 57|
|3.7 m||56 -60|
|Sawlog||4.9m||> 20cm||75 – 80|
- The following is the Forest Service May report:
- 350ha of new forests were established, bringing the afforestation programme up to 1,233ha so far this year. This is a decrease of 27% on the area planted from this date last year.
- €51,726,097 in forest premiums have been paid.
- 43,248 linear metres of new forest road have been constructed, with a grant aid cost of €1,738,329. This is an increase of 15% in linear metre construction on this date last year.
- 149 new felling licence issued in Mary bring the total licences issued to 714, this is a 76% decrease on the number of licences that issued in 2019.
Activity since last National Council
- The new Reconstitution & Underplanting Scheme (Ash Dieback) (RUS) was launched. The scheme supports (i) site clearance (in advance of reconstitution) or partial clearance (in advance of underplanting), (ii) reconstitution and (iii) underplanting.
- The underplanting support is a new element to the scheme, which involves the partial replanting of the ash plantation following partial clearance. All GPCs are available to the farmer including agro-forestry.
- The manage options available to farmers under the scheme are restricted as follows:
- The grant rates available to farmers are as follows:
- The committee will be lobbying the new Minister to include a compensation element in the ash dieback scheme; farmers who planted ash as a pension and have had their investment devastated must be compensated.
- The Forestry Appeals Committee (FAC) heard 29 appeal cases in June, of these appeals: 23 were confirmed, 5 were cancelled and 1 was varied.
- IFA attended the COFORD Wood Mobilisation and Roundwood Forecast Working Group, the meeting focussed on parameters for developing new wood forecasts and the challenges represented by continuous cover forest in determining the associated harvest volumes and review of the outstanding recommendations to be implemented from Mobilising Ireland’s Forest Resource – Meeting the Challenges.
- There was a meeting of the Management Committee, issues discussed included: new ash dieback scheme, Forestry section in Programme for Government, producer organisations and forestry licences.
- The RDS Irish Forestry and Woodland Awards has a call out for entries, the closing date is 31st July 2020. There are three prize categories (i) production forestry award, (ii) Teagasc farm forestry award and community woodlands award.
Any EU/COPA developments
- IFA participated in the webinar on The Role of Agriculture and Forestry in the EU Climate Law. Click here for an overview of the discussion.
- IFA to meet with Department to discuss their project plan for dealing with forestry licences backlog and other issues.
- Finalisation of Forestry Programme post 2020 submission, following feedback from the committee.
- Finalisation of Producer Organisation Scheme proposal.