Wood harvest by timber assortment
The level of the wood harvest depends on the investment and profits. The costs can be influenced by the forest owners (rationalisation of forest management), however they cannot influence profit levels: wood prices are largely determined by the international markets. They are also influenced by natural disasters, e.g. storms. The volume of wood harvested is largely predetermined by the utilisation plans and is monitored by the cantonal forestry services.
From the mid-1980s to 1999 the annual wood harvest in Switzerland fluctuated around 4.5 million m3. Cyclone Lothar caused a sudden increase in the wood supply in the year 2000. This increase was followed by an equally rapid decline. Higher harvesting levels have been recorded since 2003 due to a variety of influences, such as drought and Bark Beetle and the increase in the demand for wood since 2005.
Roundwood and fuelwood have experienced different developments since 2007. Whereas the harvesting of fuelwood increased steadily, there was a considerable decline in that of stemwood. The values for industrial wood have remained more or less constant.
Wood has gained again in significance as a raw material and energy source. This is an entirely positive development. The increased use of native wood has a positive influence on Switzerland's CO2 balance.
Annual survey by the cantonal forestry services. The survey is carried out directly at operational level in forestry operations with 50 or more ha of forest area. In the smaller forestry operations and private forests, it is carried out at forest district level.