Championing Sustainable Forestry in Germany: Mercer Holz

Mercer Holz is the wood purchasing organization for Mercer International’s German operations, including Mercer Rosenthal, Mercer Stendal, Mercer Torgau, and Mercer Timber Products and plays a vital role in ensuring a sustainable and responsible wood supply chain. Their commitment extends beyond simply acquiring timber – they actively champion sustainable forestry practices throughout Germany and Europe including:

  • Sustainable Sourcing: Implementing practices to ensure timber comes from responsibly managed forests, including certifications and supplier audits.
  • Forest Health: Collaborating on initiatives to manage bark beetle infestations, disease outbreaks, and the impacts of climate change on forests.
  • Logistics: Planning efficient timber transport from forests to Mercer’s facilities, potentially including infrastructure improvement projects.
  • Innovation: Partnering with Mercer and third party facilities to optimize wood use, minimize waste, and explore new wood-based product development.

By collaborating with industry leaders and policymakers, Mercer Holz works to shape the future of German forestry. Through active participation in associations, the company influences policy, champions sustainable practices, and highlights the vital role wood plays in creating a greener future.  This article explores Mercer Holz’s multifaceted approach.

Leadership in Key Committees: Driving Sustainable Forestry

Mercer Holz’s leadership roles in key committees empower us to shape the industry from within. Within “Die Papierindustrie e.V.”,  Mr. Wolfgang Beck, SVP Global Wood Sourcing, heads the responsible committee, ensuring the raw material needs of wood processing companies are prioritized. 

In the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Rohholz e.V.”, Dr. Carsten Merforth, Chief Operating Officer Wood Products, serves as spokesperson. These positions allow us to advocate for policies supporting sustainable resource supplies, efficient forest management, and the economic importance of the German forestry cluster. We are successful when it comes to lobbying for sustainable wood harvesting and climate-friendly use of wood.


✔ More information on Mercer’s association activities


Shaping Forest Policy for a Sustainable Future

Mercer Holz leverages its expertise to help shape both German and European forestry policy, for example when it comes to the amendment of the German Federal Forest Act (BWaldG), which in its current version would lead to more regulations, a potential reduction in regional timber supply and a threat to the necessary forest conversion.

Recognizing the interconnectedness of forestry issues, we also engage with European Union (EU) initiatives, such as the EU Deforestation Regulation (EUDR). The EUDR is a piece of EU legislation officially adopted in 2023 with the primary goal of eliminating deforestation caused by EU consumption and production of certain commodities. Companies importing or trading these commodities into the EU will be required to prove that they are “deforestation-free” and produced legally. While supportive of the EUDR’s goal, we champion streamlined processes to minimize unnecessary burdens on the German timber industry. Mercer Holz is also an active supporter of the German federal government’s timber construction initiative, promoting sustainable wood use to benefit German forests. This includes partnering with research institutions to develop innovative wood-based building materials.

Strategic Engagement for Sustainable Impact

Direct exchange with political decision-makers and other market participants is essential for Mercer in shaping the future of the industry. The following platforms, for example, offer the opportunity to do so:

Berlin’s Green Week: This pivotal annual event connects policymakers, industry leaders, and other stakeholders within the forestry sector. A highlight of Green Week is the “Wood Market Round Table,” hosted by the top German forestry organization (DFWR). This forum facilitates discussions and advocacy opportunities. 

Another important event was the DFWR’s EU Symposium. This symposium, organized by the German Forestry Council (Deutscher Forstwirtschaftsrat—DFWR), allowed us to contribute to industry-wide conversations on crucial topics. These include the European Green Deal, regulations addressing deforestation, and the promotion of a circular wood economy.

Campaign “Holz rettet Klima” – ” Wood Saves the Climate”: We actively support this campaign to educate the German public about the positive environmental benefits of wood products and the sustainability work occurring within the forest industry. This includes educational workshops and collaborating with universities on public outreach programs.

Sustainable Wood Use

In line with Mercer’s sustainability strategy, we prioritize resource-efficient and ecologically sound wood use within Germany. This commitment includes a focus on cascade utilization, prioritizing the production of recyclable wood products. Our lignin production processes are an excellent example of how we innovate to transform wood components into valuable materials for long-term carbon storage, supporting German climate goals. Only wood that no longer makes sense to recycle is used for energy generation.

A Sustainable Future for German Forests

We remain passionate about the German forest and are committed to finding ways to preserve and expand it for future generations. By participating in industry initiatives, in economic and political discussions and by involving the public, we aim to shape a sustainable future for German forestry—one where environmental responsibility and economic prosperity go hand-in-hand.