The purchase volume of wood is increasing

The market situation remains challenging in the forest industry, but our investments and the drive to substitute imported wood are boosting wood demand. Our wood trade was successful last year, and our purchase volume matched our own industrial needs. This year, we are aiming for significantly larger purchase volumes, as the Kemi bioproduct mill will increase its wood consumption.
  • Wood market review
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EVP, Metsä Forest

We are especially interested in thinning sites and wood from delivery sales but are also happy to purchase regeneration felling sites.

Last year tangibly demonstrated that we create benefits specifically for our owner-members. In 2023, we paid our owner-members a record profit distribution of EUR 101 million for 2022, plus approximately EUR 24 million in wood trade bonuses and price guarantees.

Our wood trade campaign in the early part of this year offers additional benefits to owner-members. We pay a higher extra bonus for regeneration felling on Metsä Group Plus sites, and this bonus is now also offered for thinning – in addition to normal wood trade bonuses. We also offer our contract customers an uncapped price guarantee for pulpwood.

The Metsä Group Plus forest management model has achieved increasing popularity and appears to be becoming a significant forest management model in Finland. Pricing based on stem volume, which we developed as a forerunner in the field, has also become an established trade practice, and was used on nearly a third of our thinning sites last year.

In August last year, we reduced the minimum diameter of pulpwood in harvesting from six to five centimetres for a fixed term until the end of the year. As the experiences of the change were good, we decided to continue using the five-centimetre minimum diameter after the turn of the year. This change will offer financial benefits to forest owners.

The employment outlook for our harvesting and transport contractors is exceptionally strong, and we are aiming for record volumes in both harvesting and logistics.

The Baltic wood market is relatively balanced. In the Baltics, the roadside prices of overbark pulpwood are currently at the same level as in Finland, while the prices of energy wood are lower. In Sweden, the market situation for softwood pulpwood is balanced, and roadside prices are at the same level as in Finland.

We achieved a record customer experience score last year and aim to further improve our operations in this respect. Our 2030 service portfolio roadmap, completed at the turn of the year, outlines our customer experience development. Our forest management services increased last year, and we achieved double-digit growth in sales.

The national implementation of the EU forest policy involves plenty of work. The EU Biodiversity Strategy’s national protection commitments and criteria for old-growth and primary forests are in the final stretch of preparations. It is important that the criteria of old-growth and primary forests are clearly defined so we have a level playing field. The state must also allocate adequate funding for sites that meet the private forest criteria to avoid any risk of grey protection in private forests.

In the Renew Metsä idea competition organised in October–November, our owner-members submitted as many as 250 initiatives for increasing the sustainability of operations in commercial forests. The competition is a practical example of the collaborative development of our operations. A warm thanks to all the participants and congratulations to the award winners.

Thank you to our owner-members for your excellent cooperation last year. We wish you an active winter!

EVP, Metsä Forest
Juha Jumppanen, EVP, Metsä Forest, is responsible for Metsä Group’s wood procurement and forestry services. He has worked his entire career at Metsä Group. He started in the forestry service business, and since then he has gained experience in harvesting, industrial customer relations, member services and wood trade. Continuous improvement and the development of customer experience and employee satisfaction are particularly close to his heart.