Imagine a life without paper. What would it look like? Napkins, kitchen paper, notebooks, newspapers and books are all made of paper, and manufacturing techniques have a long history. Sweden’s oldest paper mill is in Skåne and has produced paper since the 1500s.
One can sometimes imagine that rural communities were completely self-sufficient in the past, but this was rarely the case. Farmers needed money to pay taxes and to buy wrought-iron goods, cloth and various items that other people were better at making. You therefore needed something to sell to others.
Dissatisfaction with the lack of industrial investment in Östergötland and new sawmill technology that enabled more large-scale production lay behind the major industrial package in 1966 that included a sawmill in Kisa.
Processing the forest is the key to industrial success. In addition to pulp and sawn timber, MDF and houses are just some of the products Södra has produced over the years.
The organisation of forest owners into associations laid the foundation for Sweden´s forest industry as we know it today. But it also helped to shape opinion and raise awareness of forests.
After World War II, the need for firewood declined and forest owners began to explore what they could do with all their wood. This marked the beginning of Södra’s entry into pulp production and in 1958, the company´s first pulp mill came on stream at Mönsterås.
Over the past 80 years, Södra´s growing stock has gradually increased. Despite a higher rate of harvesting, we now have more forest than ever before. That´s because we plant more trees than we harvest.
For many forest owners, consideration for conservation and cultural values has long been a natural part of forestry. But a new policy was introduced in 1993 which states that forestry should be driven by two objectives with equal status – the environment and timber production.
Never before has a storm felled so much forest as when Cyclone Gudrun tore through southern Sweden in early January 2005.