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Sodra articles (5)

how responsible fiber harvesting can boost forest health & size



Yes, it is true that sustainable forest management can help increase the size and health of forests. Sustainable forest management practices involve a range of strategies that focus on balancing economic, social and environmental considerations while managing forest resources. These practices aim to maintain or enhance the ecological and socio-economic functions of the forest ecosystem while ensuring the sustainable use of forest resources.

We know that the value of abundant and healthy forests is indisputable. The world’s forests, which today cover 30% of the earth’s land surface, are an incredibly valuable resource, storing massive amounts of carbon, helping to purify water and air, ensuring natural biodiversity, and providing livelihoods for millions of people. Wood pulp is the most significant ingredient in our paper solutions. Therefore, we work hard to guarantee that our pulp is sourced responsibly and transparently. 

We sat down with Annica Ahlstedt Larsson (Head of Product Quality) and Anders Norén (Director of Sustainability) from Södra and delfort’s Peter Donnabauer (Head of Fiber Procurement) to speak about the importance of sustainably managed forests.

Södras virgin pulp forest

through sustainable forest management, forests can be protected from over-exploitation, illegal logging and deforestation, which are major threats to forest health and size

How do you ensure that forests stay healthy and are not depleted when collecting virgin fibers? 

Mrs. Larsson Ahlstedt and Mr. Norén from Södra:

A higher rate of forest growth and a sustainable harvest rate create conditions for maintaining and increasing net forest carbon stock change. In Södra’s roadmap for a higher rate of forest growth, 20% increased forest growth in 2050 vs. 2015, key areas have been identified for achieving the target: higher plant survival rates, effective stand management where we actively promote the right species that are fitter for the specific soil and weather conditions, forest tree breeding and damage reduction. Continued investment in research and development is also required.  

We also work actively to increase biodiversity. In 2022 we launched a nature preservation premium, which means that Södra members/forest owners receive an extra bonus for taking greater biodiversity considerations.

We have the desire to hand over something with an even greater value than it has today. The forest management of our members enables us to conduct sustainable operations and deliver products with a high sustainability performance. This requires forest growth and the conservation and development of biodiversity and social values in forests.

We have a high share of certified forests, green forestry plans that specify long-term plans for each forest stand and contribute to balancing valuable timber production, preservation or improvement of biological diversity and social consideration, consideration of cultural heritage and the social values of the forest, as well as blue target classes where watercourses are valued and the ambition for consideration of the water environment, is stated. 

Södra's follow-up Green statements are used to revise and grade annual rejuvenation fellings, thinnings, nature preservation measures and rejuvenation measures. Also, the handling of tops and branches are assessed because it is an attractive habitat for many species, above all insects and fungi. Follow-up of rejuvenation measures is also done one to two years after felling, and then land preparation, planting and cultural remains consideration, edge zones and sensitive biotopes reviewed..

Serie-Jenny och Nina

sustainable forest management practices such as selective logging, reforestation and afforestation can help maintain or increase forest cover

As a paper manufacturer delfort has a responsibility to protect forests and avoid sourcing from controversial sources. What steps does delfort take to manage due diligence? 

Mr. Donnabauer from delfort:

At delfort, we do our due diligence with all our suppliers, ensuring they meet local, national, and international laws such as EUTR and the Lacey Act. We only work with wood pulp suppliers who are FSC™ (FSC-C109921) and/or PEFC certified and are committed to Canopy’s Pack4Good initiative which ensures that no pulp comes from Ancient or Endangered forests. Every year we review all our suppliers and perform regular monitoring. We have alerts in place to notify us immediately if any certification for a supplier has been suspended. We are also regularly audited by other third-party organizations as part of our sustainability objectives and commitments. We only work with suppliers who share our high ethical and environmental standards and who are able to prove this through certifications and accreditations.

Such certifications are valuable to our customers because they are a guarantee of responsible forestry. It signifies an added value as it assures the lawful and sustainable source of raw materials. Deforestation and illegal logging are huge issues that have severe consequences. It is in our responsibility to actively protect our forests and prevent deforestation.

Overall, sustainable forest management can help ensure that forests are managed in a way that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. By promoting forest health and size, sustainable forest management can also provide a range of benefits, including economic, social, and environmental benefits, such as carbon sequestration, biodiversity conservation, and the provision of clean water.

end of interview

HPN00267 (2023-03-21T18_31_30.518)

Peter Donnabauer, Head of Corporate Procurement Fiber Materials

Peter has been part of team delfort for more than 24 years. During this time, he has been responsible for fiber sourcing along with his team. Together, they improve our strict diligence systems for pulp sourcing, risk mitigation management, and implementation of forest certifications. Peter enforces our full commitment to zero deforestation and combatting illegal logging by procuring our fibers exclusively from sustainably managed sources.

About Södra

Södra is a large forest industry group that creates products and services for a global market and contributes to the growth of the Swedish economy. They have control over the entire value chain, from seed to customer and promote sustainable development in all stages. 

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Thank you to Mrs. Larsson Ahlstedt and Mr. Norén for participating in this interview!

Annica Larsson Ahlstedt

Annica Larsson Ahlstedt, Head of Product Quality at Södra

Annica has been working with Södra for more than 25 years in different areas reaching from Innovation to Production. She is now heading the work with Product Quality at Södra Cell´s three pulp mills and she is also responsible for the Technical Customer Service including Sustainability Information.

Anders Norén Hållbarhetschef
© Anders Norén Hållbarhetschef

Anders Norén, Director of Sustainability at Södra

Anders has worked within the forest industry for the last 8 years and with Sustainability at Södra since 2021. He is overall responsible for sustainability at Södra, which includes sustainability ambition and strategy, long-term targets, improvement programs, and reporting.


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