Developing the small scale wood processing sector

We work with partners to promote the range, quality and use of Scottish grown hardwoods and niche softwoods as well as provide guidance and resources to help develop this sector.

A Harvesting and Processing grant is available to support the purchase of new equipment to increase the management, harvesting and processing of timber from small, undermanaged and farm woodlands.

Timber processing

In Scotland the timber processing sector largely consists of small-scale static and mobile sawmillers, many of which are involved with making flooring, cladding and furniture.

The Association of Scottish Hardwood Sawmillers and their journal The Full Circle are useful references for this sector. The association’s Guide to Sawmilling also has useful pointers for setting up and running a sawmill.

This new film seeks to demystify the process by which hardwood trees are graded and valued, with particular reference to oak. It also touches on the important elements of measuring and marketing hardwood timber in Scotland. It is aimed at foresters, woodland owners and sawmillers new to the topic or who wish a refresher of the key issues.

Sales on the National Forest Estate

Forest Enterprise Scotland manage approximately nine per cent of the Scotland's broadleaved woodland resource with an annual Scottish hardwood sawlog production of approximately 20-25,000 tonnes. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. is Forest Enterprise Scotland’s Marketing and Hardwood Development Advisor and is the main point of contact for hardwood and niche softwood timber sales from the National Forest Estate.

Useful resources

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Making the grade

A great guide to UK hardwood timber which details the different species and quality available from our sawn hardwood timber. It also gives information on timber measurements and highlights the special features of homegrown hardwoods often difficult to obtain from imports.

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Guide to small and mini-scale forest machinery safety

Forest Research's guide on small and mini-scale forest machinery will help you select the safest machinery for your needs. The team is currently working on a guide for safe selection and use of small scale timber trailers.


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Growing quality birch in Scotland

Forest Research's guide to growing birch in Scotland for higher quality timber. They have been commissioned to develop similar guides on growing oak and sycamore in Scotland for quality timber.


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Shake in oak: an evidence review

Forest Research's report on shake in oak (Forestry Commission Research Information Note No. 218) provides recommendations on tackling shake, assessing a range of evidence on the issue.


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Green oak in construction

A practical guide for traditional and modern designs using freshly cut oak, and the case studies included in this publication are also a useful reference.




Our industry partners