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Improved forest harvesting practices, with due consideration of the forest environment, are considered an important step towards sustainable forest management, particularly in tropical regions.

In 1995, FAO has developed a Model Code of Forest Harvesting Practice, as a compendium of modern technics of environmentally sound harvesting practices. This document has undergone an extensive review by experts and practitioners in order to allow its application under changing conditions for training purposes and demonstration of improved forest management.

The present case study has been carried out with a private company in the Amazon which had already demonstrated its willingness and capability to apply the economic, social and environmental requirements for sustainable forest management.

The results of the study give the opportunity to compare the efficiency and the environmental impacts of environmentally sound forest harvesting in tropical natural forests as an alternative to the traditional and destructive logging systems generally used in the Amazon-region in Brazil.

Although a case study is just a snapshot, it is hoped that this case study will contribute to raise interest in introducing sustainable forest management practices in natural tropical forest within the country and elsewhere.

The Forest Products Division wishes to express its appreciation to Precious Woods Ltd. for their kind support through its local subsidiary Mil Madeireira Itacoatiara in Brazil.

This case study was made possible through a special contribution by the Austrian Government for the FAO programme on environmentally sound forest harvesting to sustain tropical forests.

K.H. Schmincke


Forest Products Division

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