Managing for the economy

Managing for the economy

Updated 21st December 2023

The public forest estate is a huge renewable resource. The revenue we generate from harvesting and selling timber, through commercial partnerships and by maximising the assets found on the estate help ensure our forests remain vibrant, open and attractive places.

We are the largest supplier of sustainably produced timber in England, selling around 1.4 million tonnes per year.

This enables us to support the wider British timber and forestry industry, and work with hundreds of contracting businesses, sawmills and factories that rely on a year-round supply of wood to maintain employment and investment in the industry.

For decades sustainability has been at the heart of how we manage our forests and harvest our timber. We work to stringent standards to supply responsibly produced wood.

We are the first state forest organisation in the world to receive the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) accreditation. Our timber is also certified by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC).

The Forestry Commission is a key partner of Grown In Britain, an initiative aimed at promoting the benefits of using British grown timber in the UK, in support of local economies, people and wildlife.

We cannot rely solely on our timber for revenue. To ensure we are less reliant on support from the government and have diverse sources of income to sustain our activities, we also work with commercial partners.

We play a key role in supporting businesses and local economies around the country. Across the public forest estate we support over 640 private businesses through our cafes, shops, recreational, woodland and estate management.

We also generate additional income from other parts of the public forest estate. This can include mineral production from our sites or letting land and buildings for residential or commercial use.

These partnerships allow us to offer different ways of experiencing the public forest estate and generating additional income.