The European forest industry recognises that its future is inextricably linked to the protection and expansion of its forests. This couples with strong and effectively enforced laws and ensures that more trees are planted than harvested.

All European countries have policies and practices requiring reforestation. Although the number of trees planted per hectare will vary depending upon the species and site, it will always be more than the number cut in order to allow for natural losses and for the forest to be well stocked.

A variety of approaches

Due to the wide variety of historical, demographic, economic, climatic, and ecological circumstances, different management and regeneration methods are used across Europe – from large-scale regeneration felling in uniform coniferous monocultures, to group or even single tree selection systems in mixed or broadleaved forests.

Protected forests

Nearly 12% of the forest area is set aside to conserve forest biological and landscape diversity. Of this, more than 1.6 million ha are strict forest reserves. There are large tracts of protected forests in Northern and Eastern Europe with little human intervention, which are actively managed for biological biodiversity. 85-90% of the European forest serves multi-functional purposes and also helps to protect the soil, water, and other ecosystem functions.



Forest composition
66% of the European forest is restored by natural regeneration
30% by planting or seeding and a little more than 1% by coppicing