The Covid lockdown coincided with increased demand for a range of timber products. This was most noticeable in demand for timber to produce pallets which were needed to transport medicines around the world. Interestingly, timber to produce cardboard packaging to facilitate home delivery of online shopping is another sector that has seen an increase in demand for timber during this time.
Post Covid and the return to people living normal lives and going on holidays etc saw a drop in the high demand for timber products experienced both during and immediately after the pandemic. This in turn was exacerbated by the illegal invasion of the Ukraine by Russia. This led directly to increased energy prices with consumers more concerned with paying energy bills than starting new building projects.
However, over the past two weeks some signs of a recovery in the demand for timber products is emerging. For the first time in months all of the roundwood made available to the processing sector in the UK through the state sector tenders and in Ireland on the most recent auction was sold. In effect, there was demand for the roundwood on offer which ensured reserve prices were achieved.
This rising tide in demand is good news for forest owners in Ireland who have timber to sell and who have valid felling licences at hand. Our advice to such owners is to take stock of the market, weigh up their options and talk to our local harvesting manager who can better inform you on prices and returns.