Forestry Commission Scotland logo
Sheep grazing next to woodland

Farm and estate woodlands

Farm and estate woodlands are often left to look after themselves. Being typically small and isolated, they may be seen as difficult and uneconomic to manage.

However, farm and estate woodland management can provide significant benefits, such as a sustainable fuel supply and valuable timber products. Managed well, woodlands have the potential to provide a new business avenue for farmers and estate owners and to contribute towards the environmental value of the business. Producing woodfuel from your woodlands can make overall woodland management economically feasible.

The Forestry Commission estimates that an additional 2 million tonnes of wood could be harvested from currently under-managed woodlands in the UK by 2020. Increased demand and prices for wood fuel will offer a stimulus for landowners to better manage UK woodland.

Please note that in many instances the best first use of timber is not for wood fuel. High quality saw mill grade logs, for example, should not ideally be used for wood fuel and it may be that more money could be obtained from selling high grade timber to timber merchants rather than processing it for your own woodfuel supply.  Instead, low grade wood, thinnings, small round wood and wood processing by-products make a more suitable source of raw woodfuel material.  Ultimately, woodfuel provides a valuable opportunity to give a value to forest products which may, previously, have had no value.

Usewoodfuel Scotland recently gave a series of farm woodland management presentation days. You can download the presentations given here: