Forestry Commission logo

Forestry Statistics 2013 - Sources

Sources: Timber

previous | next  

Wood production


Figures on UK wood production (or removals) are compiled from a variety of sources: 

  • Forestry Commission (FC)/Forest Service (FS) administrative records - for all removals from FC/FS woodlands (including woodlands that, from 1 April 2013, are managed by Natural Resources Wales);

  • the Private Sector Softwood Removals Survey - for softwood removals from non-FC/FS woodlands and

  • statistics on deliveries - for total hardwood removals.

The compilation of data on wood production was extended in 2004 to include Northern Ireland. 

These sources cover removals of roundwood (trunk and branch wood) only. A new survey was introduced in 2009 to collect data on removals of brash (branch wood and leaf material) and stumps (above-ground base part of trees). The collection of stump removals was discontinued in 2012.

The software used to record Forestry Commission sales has included some sales of mixed softwood and hardwood as softwood in previous years.

Further information on administrative sources can be found at:


Figures for removals from FC/FS woodlands are converted from cubic metres (m3) to green tonnes using standard conversion factors. For total softwood figures, the results from the Private Sector Softwood Removals Survey are combined with the data for FC/FS woodlands to produce total softwood removals.

For hardwood figures, the total hardwood removals are assumed to equal the total hardwood deliveries (obtained from industry surveys and industry associations; see subsequent pages for further information on these sources). Hardwood removals from FC/FS woodlands are then subtracted to give an estimate of the amount of hardwood removed from non-FC/FS woodlands.

Softwood removals methodology change

The methodology used to estimate the quantity of UK softwood removals from woodland that is not owned or managed by the Forestry Commission (in Great Britain) or the Forest Service (in Northern Ireland) was revised for the release of provisional 2011 estimates in "UK Wood Production and Trade: 2011 provisional figures". Details of the change in methodology and its impact on the figures are available in the "Methodology Review of Softwood Removals from Non-FC/FS Woodland" paper, available at$FILE/rem_methodology_rev2011-12.pdf


Non-FC/FS softwood removals are subject to revision annually (see note on the Private Sector Softwood Removals Survey). Removals from FC/FS woodlands are not normally revised. Total hardwood removals (and consequently hardwood removals from non-FC/FS woodlands) are subject to annual revisions (see notes on deliveries for further information).

Figures for 2012 are final; provisional figures were previously released in "UK Wood Production and Trade: 2012 provisional figures". Non-FC/FS hardwood removals for 2012 in Table 2.1 have been revised downwards from 482 to 478 thousand green tonnes.

Figures for earlier years have not been revised from those provided in "UK Wood Production and Trade: 2012 provisional figures".

Information on revisions made since "Forestry Statistics 2012" are provided in "UK Wood Production and Trade: 2012 provisional figures".

Further information

Figures are published as UK totals. Country breakdowns (England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland) are also published for softwood in table 2.2 for non-FC/FS removals and table 2.3 for FC/FS removals. Approximate country breakdowns are also estimated for hardwood removals.

Longer time series, presenting estimates of FC/FS and non-FC/FS removals by country and by softwood/hardwood are available from the Timber Statistics web page at

Release schedule

Provisional figures for 2013 will be released on 15 May 2014 in "UK Wood Production and Trade: 2013 provisional figures".

Final figures for 2013 will be released on 25 September 2014 in "Forestry Statistics 2014" and "Forestry Facts & Figures 2014".

Links to Forestry Statistics 2013