Federal Office for Agriculture and Food

Beech Forest Beech Forest Source: Inga Nielsen - Fotolia.com

Forest and Timber

Sustainable forestry focuses on topics such as forest adaptation to climate change, conservation of near-natural, highly structured forests with many different species as natural basis of existence, protection of forest ecosystems, and stronger development of forest and timber CO2 reduction and energy potential. The aim is to combat illegal logging and the trade with timber products of illegal origin.

The FLEGT action plan should contribute to allow entry into the EU only of legally harvested timber and products manufactured from it. According to the Timber Trade Protection Act (HolzSiG), the BLE is in charge of verifying FLEGT authorisations. The BLE carries out inspections in monitoring organisations, market participants, and dealers.

In addition, the BLE assumes the tasks of the Forest Reproductive Material Act (Forstvermehrungsgutgesetz), such as maintaining the registry of authorised starting material and the list of forest seed and forest plant reproduction farms. Moreover, it monitors the entry of forest reproduction material and organises the collaboration with the other EU member states in this area. The BLE also compiles annual forest reproduction material statistics.

Forest Climate Fund

The BLE is project sponsor for the "Forest Climate Fund", set up under the joint leadership of the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) and the Federal Ministry of the Environment (BMUB). The Forest Climate Fund should implement measures of special federal interest that serve to adapt forests to climate change and conserve the indispensable contribution of near-natural, highly structured forests with many different species to permanently secure the natural basis of life.

Research for international sustainable forestry

While the BMEL promotes international sustainable forestry research, the BLE as project sponsor supervises individual research projects.

In this regard, the research cooperation efforts and projects are focused on sustainable and multifunctional forestry. Thus, for example, research projects to combat illegal logging are a first step towards achieving sustainability.