Average Prices for Standing Sales Contracts
These are published for the 12 month periods, from 1st October to end of September and 1st April to end of March in the following year. They can be located via the link 'This schedule' on the Market Info page which can be accessed, as with the Monthly Timber price graphs, via this link. click here:
FC Monthly Timber Price Graphs
From June 2006 we are publishing monthly despatch unit prices for Sawlog and Standing Sales (by weight) categories to the same level as the monthly price graphs detailed below. The tables and graphs for these can be accessed via the same link.
The Forestry Commission Monthly Timber Price Graphs showing Average Prices achieved for Sawlog and Standing Sales timber categories, including Average tree sizes for Standing Sales, are now published down to Territory level in the Market Info pages of the FC Internet. The page can be accessed via this link. click here:
Customer Liaison Meetings
The annual FE England Customer Liaison Meetings take place in February, at Penrith, for North England and, for South England, at the Forestry Commission's Westonbirt Arboretum, later that month. Contact Kay Greenwell (Tel:01179 066017 or email: Nikki Morgans) or Charene Winbow (Tel:01179 066024 or email: Charene Winbow) for further information.
Annual Hardwood Sale - November 2010
The 23rd annual hardwood auction was held on 25th November 2010 in the Great Oak Hall, Westonbirt, Gloucestershire. This year’s auction was a very successful event with a new record being set for oak logs whilst overall sales, on the day, came to just short of £3/4m from a volume of 13k m3 from England.
The continuing strength of the Euro means that continental oak in particular remains relatively high-priced. Mills using up to 1k m3 of French oak each month were therefore very keen to buy FSC/PEFC English oak and prices on the day reflected this.
Demand for Hardwood firewood continues to create a strong and increasingly competitive market for non-log material - standing and roadside. In recent years investment in larger, more efficient firewood processing equipment has grown considerably and judging by the range on show at the APF event this year, the semi-automated, one-man, mobile firewood factories are still in big demand. The capacity to supply larger wholesale, as well as traditional, direct-to-retail firewood log markets has grown and this has created the market demand for raw material.
FC England offered 36 Lots for sale on the day, 15% down on last year - partly due to several sites being held up by operating constraints. The 36 Lots comprised 12 standing hardwood, 21 hardwood log, 2 standing softwood and 1 softwood log. FC Wales offered 2 standing broadleaved Lots and the private sector added one further Lot of softwood log.
The auction was very well attended this year with several new faces in the room. Bidding was strong from the start and as prices and the competition increased over the first few Lots, some became reluctant to start bidding until the auctioneer dropped down well below the price at which Lots eventually sold. A handful of Lots needed encouragement from John Jenkins to get them going and tactics were all in play as new bids often came in just as the hammer was falling. After 11/2 hours, only four Lots remained unsold. One was negotiated on the day and two English log Lots (one Oak and one conifer) and one Welsh Lot are currently with the highest bidder for their best and final offer before other options are considered. None of the written bids received beforehand was successful.
Overall, the Log parcels did extremely well with Lot 33 from West Midlands achieving a new record of £206.90 /m3 for Oak log. On average Oak log sold over reserve with three Lots from the Dean achieving more than double the valuation. Successful bidders included Mendip, ATS, Pontrilas, Soffe, English Woodlands, Pembrokeshire and Barrets.
Oak log and tree size were generally considerably larger than last and the quality was similar, but one district in particular achieved some very high quality Lots by doing some sorting at roadside. In general, hardwood log presentation this year was considered to be excellent and several buyers mentioned this after the auction.
Beech sold at good prices with some large stems in SE England fetching £58 /m3 but the Sweet Chestnut Lot from the Dean (some large logs, average quality) brought nearly £154 /m3 from ATS for use as external building cladding. One roadside firewood Lot from Sherwood made £43/tonne from the bidder who also bought Lots 2, 3, 4 and 6, in the broadleaved thinning category.
Standing parcels were mainly thinnings of smaller-sized oak, beech, sycamore, red oak, and even alder. Bidding was strong and, interestingly, weight sales made significantly better equivalent prices than volume sales. ATS succeeded with two standing Lots - one very small ash and beech and one excellent large oak, whilst Chantler, Powell, Woodgate, Peckham and Smiths of Axford were also successful bidders.
The large (50 - 60cm dbh) Japanese larch thinning at Cannock, West Midlands, sold to Benbow at £43 /m3 while the much larger (70 - 80 cm dbh) Douglas fir at Wythop, North West, came in at £47 /m3. The Douglas fir log Lot from SE England did not sell on the day, with bids stopping well short of reserve, and this will now be sold by negotiation.
In conclusion thanks go to all colleagues involved in preparing and presenting Lots for sale, and particularly to Kay Greenwell who managed the trade liaison and the sale process so well. Special thanks also to John Jenkins of Newland, Rennie Wilkins for a sterling performance in which he showed that, not only can he spot a raised eyebrow at the back of the room even as the hammer falls, but also he is happy to adjust a bid upwards if he thinks the raise offered is too small!
From 1st April 2009 Forest Enterprise Scotland's district structure has changed. The number of districts has reduced to 10 from 14. Moray, Fort Augustus, Lorne and Scottish Borders Forest Districts are no longer.
Key changes are:
- Moray is amalgamated with Aberdeenshire to form Moray & Aberdeenshire Forest District, with John Thomson as Forest District Manager (FDM), at Huntly;
- Fort Augustus and Inverness have been amalgamated to form Inverness, Ross & Skye Forest District, based in Inverness, with David Jardine as FDM;
- the Northern part of Lorne has transferred to Lochaber, where Kevin Peace is FDM, and the Southern parts between West Argyll and Cowal & Trossachs, led by Nick Purdy and Gordon Donaldson respectively;
- Ae and Scottish Borders have been merged to form Dumfries & Borders Forest District, centred in Ae, with Bill Meadows as FDM.
- Dornoch Forest District, where Tim Cockerill is FDM, has a name change - to North Highland Forest District, and its office address to: The Links, Golspie Business Park, Golspie,
Sutherland KW10 6UB; tel: 01408 634063; fax: 01408 634014.
Galloway, Tay and Scottish Lowlands remain, with Rob Soutar, Charlie Taylor and Brent Meakin as FDMs respectively.
Details of the staffing arrangements can be found on the Timber Sales, Key Contacts page - link here: