The small round wood market is patchy across the country, with currently surplus volume in some areas; again the situation is more difficult in the north than it is in the south. Overall the main panel producers are busy supplying a buoyant construction industry, chipboard sales are good whilst MDF is at similar levels to last year. Imports into the panel sector are an issue in value added products but overall sales are good. Most mills are well supplied with volume in particular in areas where technical issues or maintenance shut downs have meant more volume is available than is being consumed, this is particularly true in north Scotland and the Scottish borders. Further south the market continues in balance with some regional shortages such as south Wales.
The small round wood fencing market continues to be buoyant with healthy demand for material, although as usual in the summer not as hectic as earlier in the year.
Overall the market is certainly facing currency driven issues and a rebasing of pricing levels for round timber that is more acute in the north of the UK than it is in the south. The market has been on an upward trajectory for several years and is once again illustrating that it is cyclical by nature.