FSC Sweden grants Södra exemption to use insecticide Merit Forest WG on saplings in 2012, as part of pine weevil protection effort

VAXJO, Sweden , November 9, 2011 (press release) – Swedish FSC has granted Södra exemption to use the insecticide Merit Forest WG to treat its saplings in 2012. This exemption is also applicable to the retreatment of saplings in the field with Merit Forest WG. All members of Södra which hold FSC certification for their forestry through Södra will be covered by the exemption.

Södra's major investment in the production of mechanical pine weevil protection is one reason why the application for exemption has been granted; another is its systematic environmental work. Plans are afoot to protect two million saplings with toxin-free protection in 2012. Of these, some 1 million bare root and PluggPlusEtt saplings will be coated with a wax which will protect the stems of the forest saplings from insect attack. For container saplings, promising results have been achieved in the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences' official trials developed by Södra.

The pine weevil is the biggest single pest in forest saplings in southern Sweden and causes major wastage of saplings planted every year. If saplings are not protected, it is often the case that more than half of them will die due to damage caused by the pine weevil. Around 90 per cent of saplings sold in Götaland nowadays are treated with chemical insecticides.

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