Glasfryn Forest and Sawmill
Glasfryn Fencing and Sawmill in north-west Wales specialise in fencing stakes and firewood, using wood harvested from their own 400 hectare forest.
They have held FSC®/PEFC™ Chain of Custody Certification for 8 years, initially motivated to do so in order to fulfil the procurement requirements for public bodies such as Snowdonia National Park Authority, local authorities and Natural Resources Wales.
Managing Director Arwel Roberts talks about his business and about working with the Soil Association Certification Forestry team.
Tell us about your business:
The forest area is plantation on old low quality agricultural land. Principal species is Sitka spruce much of which is now entering second rotation. The Sawmill is adjacent to the main forest block, reducing the need for road transport. Because we harvest from our own woodland we can saw timber to unusual lengths and manufacture products to meet exact requirements.
Tell us about your forest:
All the timbers we use are home grown. An integral part of our management of this historic resource is an organised felling and restocking programme, which allows more trees to be planted than are harvested. Harvesting is achieved with the very latest machinery whilst restocking includes planned planting programmes as well as natural reseeding.
We can’t praise the Forestry team at the Soil Association enough for their ‘can-do’ attitude.Arwel Roberts
How did you find the process of certification?
We can’t praise the Forestry team at the Soil Association enough for their ‘can-do’ attitude. They promptly respond to queries and provide practical support. They applied common sense and always looked to find solutions in FSCs standards and interpretations. Focussing on what was possible made refreshing change to previous experiences.
Why did you choose us?
We had already been certified by Soil Association Forestry for the previous 8 years for our Chain of Custody certificate and were happy with the service we had received.
The FSC ® logo allows us to demonstrate [our] values to a wider customer baseArwel Roberts
What has the impact been on business?
Our main customers are local farmers who know the forest and use us because we contribute to the local economy, employ local staff and are able to tailor our products to meet their requirements. The FSC ® logo provides us with an independent endorsement which allows us to demonstrate those values and practices to a wider customer base who do not know the forest and mill personally.
Over the years our management of these plantations has gained almost 50 national awards. Most recently we gained a Silver award for a young hardwood plantation and a bronze for a Sitka Spruce regeneration and restock site at the 2016 Royal Welsh Show. Both of these compartments were visited by the Soil association auditor at this year’s audit.
For more information, see www.glasfrynfencing.co.uk