This document is prepared to highlight the urgent need for a global study on the status and trends of biotechnology applications into the forestry sector. Technical development of forestry, in most cases, mirrors that of agriculture and our experiences from agriculture indicate that there is no need to let history repeat itself. In fact, the ambiguity surrounding the use of biotechnology tools into forestry has already caused confusion. As stated above, only one out of five possible biotechnology categories in forestry involves the deliberate genetic manipulation and its state-of-the-art is only experimental, however, public perception may preclude or color the usefulness of the other categories into forestry. It should be highlighted that the FAO is the most suitable organization to take the lead role in this important undertaking due to its neutrality and global presence.
The diversity of topics and the variable level of competence in the field of forestry biotechnology require cross-functional team effort. Wide contribution that covers species and geographic representation is required to ensure accuracy and balance.