Scotland’s £1 billion forestry sector is seeking more entrants via recognised training routes to safeguard its longevity.
The Crown Estate in Scotland and the UK’s forest industry body Confor said efforts to attract more students to industry-specific training and degree courses have grown, with the industry “working hard to promote a wide range of employment options”.
They added that the initiative comes against a backdrop of some higher education institutions having considered dropping courses due to lack of interest, including Aberdeen University, which currently runs the only forestry degree programme in Scotland.
The Crown Estate manages about 5,000 hectares of commercial forest in Scotland and its head of countryside management, Andy Wells, said: “The forestry industry offers excellent opportunities for people with a wide range of skills and interests, whether you are looking for practical outdoor work or a challenging career involving technical woodland management, scientific research, marketing, recreation, conservation, policy and sustainable land management.
“It is vital to the future of Scotland’s forestry industry that new entrants come through recognised training routes. Forestry is a primary industry which thrives when sustainable management principles combine with land management and business acumen, and there is a high level of skill involved.”