Balancing the annual increment and annual fellings is vital for the sustainability of wood production and using wood as a renewable raw material.

This balance allows an adequate growing stock and forest environment necessary to provide a range of ecosystem services and non-wood products. Today´s management and wood use must not compromise management options for future generations. The feedstock extracted from forests should not exceed increment in the long term.

The ratio of annual wood fellings to annual increment is relatively stable and remains under 80 % for most countries across Europe. This utilisation rate, and the fact that forest area in Europe is expanding, explain the increase in forest growing stock in Europe over the last decades.