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Södra Begins Wax Application to Protect Saplings
Stockholm, Sweden, 10 February 2012 -- Södra has installed a new machine for applying wax protection to its saplings as an effective, non-toxic means of guarding against pine weevil damage. This machine is the first of its type.

"Forestry operations at Södra focus on balancing profitability with environmental protection. Reducing the use of chemicals and investing resources in the development of non-toxic methods is entirely in line with this," said Göran Örlander, chief forester at Södra.

The machine has been on trial at Södra Skogsplantor in Falkenberg for a couple of weeks, and it is calibrated for future large-scale production. The wax protection will initially be used on bare root saplings and "plug plus one" saplings. The wax makes it difficult for pine weevils to gnaw their way through to the bark and has been specially developed for high elasticity. This means that the wax holds together even when the sapling grows during its first delicate growth season.

"The tests carried out by both Södra and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences have shown that this wax protection is very effective. Failing to protect saplings from pine weevil damage is a costly exercise, as on average more than half of unprotected saplings die as a result of the attack. This is why around 90% of all saplings sold nowadays are protected, but by means of chemicals. Being able to offer a non-toxic yet effective alternative to chemical protection is eagerly awaited," said Andreas Alvehus at Södra Skogsplantor.

This project is a cooperation between Södra Skogsplantor, Ramlösa Plantskola, and Sundins Skogsplantor.

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