Forest

We work with the world’s most natural resource

1

The forest is the basis of life

Trees are living organisms that heavily influence our living conditions. They purify and store 40% of the drinking water in Switzerland. There are over 500 million trees in Switzerland, which absorb 1.6 million CO2 per year and provide a habitat for 20,000 flora and fauna. 90% of the Swiss population cherish the forests and enjoy spending time in them. The Federal Office for the Environment estimates the corresponding recuperative effect at around CHF 28.6 billion.

2

Our blue planet is also beautifully green!

A total of 4 billion hectares of forest grow on the Earth, equal to approximately one third of the world’s surface. Around 30% of Switzerland is covered in forests and some 130 species of trees and shrubs are native to the country. Spruce is by far the most common tree species – more than a third of trees belong to this pine family. This is followed by beeches and firs.

3

Did you know that trees can tweet?

Researchers at a Belgian university attached sensors to trees that measure the smallest changes. The data showed, for example, how trees react to heat and drought. Scientists have now found a way to formulate a suitable short message from this data. If it is too dry, then the tree tweets something like “Help, I’m thirsty!” In this way, it is possible to collect important information about the forest.

4

Enough with the shortage-of-timber fairy tales

We have wood in abundance and it can replace crude oil in many areas. 10 million cubic metres of wood grow in the Swiss forests every year but only 6.5 million cubic metres are harvested. Wood is the number one raw material. Worldwide, too.

  • The forest is the basis of life

    Trees are living organisms that heavily influence our living conditions. They purify and store 40% of the drinking water in Switzerland. There are over 500 million trees in Switzerland, which absorb 1.6 million CO2 per year and provide a habitat for 20,000 flora and fauna. 90% of the Swiss population cherish the forests and enjoy spending time in them. The Federal Office for the Environment estimates the corresponding recuperative effect at around CHF 28.6 billion.

  • Our blue planet is also beautifully green!

    A total of 4 billion hectares of forest grow on the Earth, equal to approximately one third of the world’s surface. Around 30% of Switzerland is covered in forests and some 130 species of trees and shrubs are native to the country. Spruce is by far the most common tree species – more than a third of trees belong to this pine family. This is followed by beeches and firs.

  • Did you know that trees can tweet?

    Researchers at a Belgian university attached sensors to trees that measure the smallest changes. The data showed, for example, how trees react to heat and drought. Scientists have now found a way to formulate a suitable short message from this data. If it is too dry, then the tree tweets something like “Help, I’m thirsty!” In this way, it is possible to collect important information about the forest.

  • Enough with the shortage-of-timber fairy tales

    We have wood in abundance and it can replace crude oil in many areas. 10 million cubic metres of wood grow in the Swiss forests every year but only 6.5 million cubic metres are harvested. Wood is the number one raw material. Worldwide, too.

Wood

We work with the oldest material of the future

1

Wood is high-tech

Its special microstructure means that wood has an extremely high load-bearing capacity despite its low net weight. Based on this net weight, wood can support 14 times as much as steel – and with far less manufacturing effort.

2

Are you stressed? Build a house made of wood!

A study at a school has shown that wood panelling in classrooms substantially reduces stress levels for pupils and lowers their heart rate. What’s more, the social stress felt by teachers due to children and young people declined heavily. Reason enough to always want wood around you in your day-to-day life.

3

Why is wood better in the event of fire? Ask the fire brigade!

If a fire breaks out, wood’s behaviour is predictable and manageable compared to other construction materials. Wood burns slowly and delays the fire from spreading inwards. The layer of carbon acts like a kind of protective jacket. Underneath this, the wood remains unscathed, keeping its load capacity for an exceptionally long time.

4

Why ice cream sticks are made of wood

Wood is a poor conductor of heat and therefore never gets uncomfortably hot or cold. That’s why ice cream on a wooden stick doesn’t slide off for a very long time. This also means that wood offers excellent protection in both cold winters and hot summers. Additionally, wood improves the indoor climate and has a positive effect on residents’ well-being.

  • Wood is high-tech

    Its special microstructure means that wood has an extremely high load-bearing capacity despite its low net weight. Based on this net weight, wood can support 14 times as much as steel – and with far less manufacturing effort.

  • Are you stressed? Build a house made of wood!

    A study at a school has shown that wood panelling in classrooms substantially reduces stress levels for pupils and lowers their heart rate. What’s more, the social stress felt by teachers due to children and young people declined heavily. Reason enough to always want wood around you in your day-to-day life.

  • Why is wood better in the event of fire? Ask the fire brigade!

    If a fire breaks out, wood’s behaviour is predictable and manageable compared to other construction materials. Wood burns slowly and delays the fire from spreading inwards. The layer of carbon acts like a kind of protective jacket. Underneath this, the wood remains unscathed, keeping its load capacity for an exceptionally long time.

  • Why ice cream sticks are made of wood

    Wood is a poor conductor of heat and therefore never gets uncomfortably hot or cold. That’s why ice cream on a wooden stick doesn’t slide off for a very long time. This also means that wood offers excellent protection in both cold winters and hot summers. Additionally, wood improves the indoor climate and has a positive effect on residents’ well-being.

Work

We use the natural resource ecologically and sustainably

1

Where does the wood come from?

Certified Swiss wood companies from the timber industry pledge to process at least 80% of the timber from Switzerland. In doing so, they make an important contribution to the reduction in CO2 and support the local value chain.

2

Turning round into angular

The members of the timber industry mainly process coniferous wood from spruce and fir. Deciduous wood only makes up 5% of production. About 60% of sawn timber comes from round and conical trunks. 40% of the residual timber is produced as a by-product in the form of sawdust, wood shavings, wood chips, slabs and bark.

3

How much wood is processed?

Sawmills are an important part of the value chain in the wood cycle. They enable sustainable use of our forests. Around 130,000 cubic metres of wood are processed in our sawmill at Erlenhof every year, equal to 25 lorries of timber per day. We are the fourth largest sawmill in Switzerland. In the past 10 years, the number of Swiss sawmills has fallen from around 600 to 220.

4

Where does the wood go?

50% to 60% of sawn timber production, currently 1.1 million cubic metres, is supplied to the construction sector. This is followed by producers of pallets and boxes, interior construction companies, window manufacturers, building centres and export firms. Residual timber is used for the manufacture of paper and wood-based composites (e.g. chip boards). Residual timber is also becoming increasingly important for energy production. Just like us, many other sawmills are already producing thermal energy for their own drying chambers and for district heating grids.

  • Where does the wood come from?

    Certified Swiss wood companies from the timber industry pledge to process at least 80% of the timber from Switzerland. In doing so, they make an important contribution to the reduction in CO2 and support the local value chain.

  • Turning round into angular

    The members of the timber industry mainly process coniferous wood from spruce and fir. Deciduous wood only makes up 5% of production. About 60% of sawn timber comes from round and conical trunks. 40% of the residual timber is produced as a by-product in the form of sawdust, wood shavings, wood chips, slabs and bark.

  • How much wood is processed?

    Sawmills are an important part of the value chain in the wood cycle. They enable sustainable use of our forests. Around 130,000 cubic metres of wood are processed in our sawmill at Erlenhof every year, equal to 25 lorries of timber per day. We are the fourth largest sawmill in Switzerland. In the past 10 years, the number of Swiss sawmills has fallen from around 600 to 220.

  • Where does the wood go?

    50% to 60% of sawn timber production, currently 1.1 million cubic metres, is supplied to the construction sector. This is followed by producers of pallets and boxes, interior construction companies, window manufacturers, building centres and export firms. Residual timber is used for the manufacture of paper and wood-based composites (e.g. chip boards). Residual timber is also becoming increasingly important for energy production. Just like us, many other sawmills are already producing thermal energy for their own drying chambers and for district heating grids.

Conceive

We live and breathe the most fascinating construction material

1

Creating the seemingly impossible

From high-rise buildings to modular construction, multi-storey residential buildings, bridges, free-formed supporting structures and even works of art, wood makes an enormous range of applications possible and inspires designers and architects to reach soaring heights of creativity, time and time again. We are convinced: with wood almost everything is possible.

2

Everything remains different

To complete complex and extraordinary timber constructions, specialised experts need to work together closely and intensely. Many of our projects are prototypes, making them unique. This frequently requires different perspectives, an open mindset and a completely new approach.

3

Visions made of wood

Our visionary approach to wood, a well-proven material and perhaps the oldest, provides solutions for the future. New technologies and chemical processes continue to open up further sustainable applications for wood in a wide range of areas such as thermal insulation, packaging, fuels and many more. And amended fire protection regulations allow totally new dimensions in timber construction for residential, educational and office buildings.

4

Developing the project together

Today’s modern timber construction works with the digital platform Building Information Modelling (BIM), with which all project partners work together on a single digital model and develop it further. On the one hand, this requires expertise and an in-depth exchange of ideas and information. On the other, everyone benefits from increased process reliability and schedule and cost stability. Welcome to the future of construction.

  • Creating the seemingly impossible

    From high-rise buildings to modular construction, multi-storey residential buildings, bridges, free-formed supporting structures and even works of art, wood makes an enormous range of applications possible and inspires designers and architects to reach soaring heights of creativity, time and time again. We are convinced: with wood almost everything is possible.

  • Everything remains different

    To complete complex and extraordinary timber constructions, specialised experts need to work together closely and intensely. Many of our projects are prototypes, making them unique. This frequently requires different perspectives, an open mindset and a completely new approach.

  • Visions made of wood

    Our visionary approach to wood, a well-proven material and perhaps the oldest, provides solutions for the future. New technologies and chemical processes continue to open up further sustainable applications for wood in a wide range of areas such as thermal insulation, packaging, fuels and many more. And amended fire protection regulations allow totally new dimensions in timber construction for residential, educational and office buildings.

  • Developing the project together

    Today’s modern timber construction works with the digital platform Building Information Modelling (BIM), with which all project partners work together on a single digital model and develop it further. On the one hand, this requires expertise and an in-depth exchange of ideas and information. On the other, everyone benefits from increased process reliability and schedule and cost stability. Welcome to the future of construction.

Fabricate

Challenges move us forward

1

Create complex forms!

The timber industry has been developing high-tech components in impressive dimensions in recent years. In combination with computer-aided calculation and production methods, forms can be manufactured that are not possible with any other material. Star architects like Shigeru Ban and Sir Norman Foster have discovered wood’s potential for themselves and are designing the most complex buildings with wood.

2

Breaking records!

Silo facilities are being designed and built that are ever bigger, more networked and efficient. The material with the ideal properties for the storage of salt and other bulk solids remains the same: wood. In Bern, Europe’s largest silo facility for winter services was completed. This is only possible by combining traditional craftsmanship and cutting-edge technology.

3

Humans as the crucial factor!

By using CAD/CAM software, powerful, intelligent production engineering and smart processing strategies, the most complex components and component sets can be manufactured from wood. And with the most important element in the production chain: humans. For example, a type of modular system was created for the Cambridge Mosque in England. Thanks to parametric planning as the central interface to production, the 2,746 individual components could be manufactured in 145 variants for the 30 stylised trees.

4

Ultimate precision and even faster

Prefabrication in the production hall means time saved on the building site. But there’s more: the production of standardised components drives down costs. The elements and modules are manufactured with the utmost precision and inspected throughout the entire manufacturing process. This means consistently high quality from the first component to the last.

  • Create complex forms!

    The timber industry has been developing high-tech components in impressive dimensions in recent years. In combination with computer-aided calculation and production methods, forms can be manufactured that are not possible with any other material. Star architects like Shigeru Ban and Sir Norman Foster have discovered wood’s potential for themselves and are designing the most complex buildings with wood.

  • Breaking records!

    Silo facilities are being designed and built that are ever bigger, more networked and efficient. The material with the ideal properties for the storage of salt and other bulk solids remains the same: wood. In Bern, Europe’s largest silo facility for winter services was completed. This is only possible by combining traditional craftsmanship and cutting-edge technology.

  • Humans as the crucial factor!

    By using CAD/CAM software, powerful, intelligent production engineering and smart processing strategies, the most complex components and component sets can be manufactured from wood. And with the most important element in the production chain: humans. For example, a type of modular system was created for the Cambridge Mosque in England. Thanks to parametric planning as the central interface to production, the 2,746 individual components could be manufactured in 145 variants for the 30 stylised trees.

  • Ultimate precision and even faster

    Prefabrication in the production hall means time saved on the building site. But there’s more: the production of standardised components drives down costs. The elements and modules are manufactured with the utmost precision and inspected throughout the entire manufacturing process. This means consistently high quality from the first component to the last.

Experience

Wooden buildings fascinate and inspire

1

«The 19th century was the century of steel, the 20th century was the century of concrete and the 21st century will be the century of timber.»

– Michael Green, architect, Canada

2

«I don’t think that architecture is only about shelter. It should be able to excite you, to calm you, to make you think.»

– Zaha Hadid, architect, United Kingdom

3

«Architecture is the masterly, correct and magnificent play of masses brought together in light.»

– Le Corbusier, architect, Switzerland

4

«Architecture is an expression of values.»

– Sir Norman Foster, architect, United Kingdom

5

«The difference between good and bad architecture is the time you spend on it.»

– David Chipperfield, architect, United Kingdom

  • «The 19th century was the century of steel, the 20th century was the century of concrete and the 21st century will be the century of timber.»

    – Michael Green, architect, Canada

  • «I don’t think that architecture is only about shelter. It should be able to excite you, to calm you, to make you think.»

    – Zaha Hadid, architect, United Kingdom

  • «Architecture is the masterly, correct and magnificent play of masses brought together in light.»

    – Le Corbusier, architect, Switzerland

  • «Architecture is an expression of values.»

    – Sir Norman Foster, architect, United Kingdom

  • «The difference between good and bad architecture is the time you spend on it.»

    – David Chipperfield, architect, United Kingdom

Forest

We work with the world’s most natural resource

Wood

We work with the oldest material of the future

Work

We use the natural resource ecologically and sustainably

Conceive

We live and breathe the most fascinating construction material

Fabricate

Challenges move us forward

Experience

Wooden buildings fascinate and inspire

The fascinating world of wood

Immerse yourself