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Regional Revitalization Starting from Seedlings

Regional Revitalization Starting from Seedlings

Increasing number of municipalities are working to foster forest resources that are not yet effectively utilized as one part of regional revitalization measures. Areas of clear-cutting is expected to increase in the future as the harvesting period approaches for cedar and Japanese cypress planted after World War II, and a stable supply of seedlings is desired for reforestation. However, due to circumstances such as a lower number of producers, it is expected that the resources will be insufficient.

Sumitomo Forestry was the first to modernize seedling production. We are contributing to the sustainability of forest resources and active resource production through efforts such as the construction of greenhouse-type cultivation facilities with the proper environmental management by using proprietary production technology for seedling containers.

More specifically, starting from the development of an environmental control greenhouse facility in Hyuga City, Miyazaki in 2012, we established the know-how for production in Mombetsu City, Hokkaido as well. The production per unit of area significantly increased by controlling the temperature and humidity and allowing cultivation throughout the year compared to conventionally raising seedlings in the open. We opened new greenhouse facilities in Gero Ciy, Gifu Prefecture in fiscal 2016 and Motoyama City, Kochi Prefecture in May 2017 to establish a system capable to cultivate 1.3 million seedlings a year throughout Japan.

We are also linking to local municipalities to contribute to the revitalization of the region by establishing greenhouses with local employment as well as the development and standardization of new technology related to seedling cultivation in addition to as well.

Trends in Production of Seedlings Throughout Japan
Trends in Production of Seedlings Throughout Japan
  • * Source: Annual Report on Forest and Forestry in Japan Fisical Year 2016
Cultivating Sumitomo Forestry Seedlings Throughout Japan
Cultivating Sumitomo Forestry Seedlings Throughout Japan

Standardizing Information to Promote Use of Forest Information

Local municipalities, forest business proprietors, forest owners, timber consumers and other relevant parties need to effectively and skillfully use resources by sharing a wide range of forest information such as the amount of resources in the forest as well as the history of the owners, topography, and transportation system to revitalize the forests in Japan. Forestry Agency promotes the Standard Specifications for a Forestry Cloud System as part of its business to develop technology for the sophisticated use of forest information that standardizes data and systems for forest information in order to solve these issues. Sumitomo Forestry created and revised the Standard Specifications for a Forestry Cloud System together with the JIPDEC as a secondary business within our existing business in fiscal 2013. We also released the latest 3.1 version in August 2016. These standard specifications were adopted by 2 prefectures and 15 municipalities as of March 31, 2017.

We hope to promote the maintenance of local forest and development of forestry through the adoption of the standard specifications by local municipalities, forest business proprietors, timber consumers and all other relevant parties in addition to the realization of efficient and sophisticated forest management.

Creating the Forest and Forestry Master Plan in Itoshima, Fukuoka

Sumitomo Forestry is providing consulting in planning of forest management and forestry development conducted by local municipalities by taking advantage of its wealth of knowledge in forest management cultivated in company-owned forests over a long period of time. As part of these efforts, we supported the creation of a Forest and Forestry Master Plan in Itoshima City, Fukuoka Prefecture as an initiative to use local forest resource since January 2016.

This plan is the foundation for measures related to proper forest maintenance and effective use of city lumber in Itoshima, which is positioned as the basic plan for businesses to build supply chains for city use of timber that takes advantage of ICT promoted by Itoshima.

As methods to create this master plan, we are zoning areas that consider attributes such as the growth rate and accessibility of forests as well as the environmental conservation functions after grasping the amount of forest resources within the city limits through aerial laser measurement. Sumitomo Forestry formulated a harvesting plan and a plan for a transportation network that would be optimal to haul timber cultivated in the forest out by defining policies for conducting operations in the forest for each zone. Moreover, we also examined the systems to build to execute measures that follow this master plan.

Itoshima expects to achieve regional revitalization that utilizes the forest based on this Forest and Forestry Master Plan in the future.

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CSR Report2017