Swedish innovation increases the value of the forest

Otmetka has developed a world-unique logistics solution with guaranteed traceability, which also effectively creates unbroken digital data, of the world’s timber. In New Zealand, the first steps are now being taken in digitizing forestry right down to the log level.

With a special tool, a unique and encrypted code is stamped on each log during felling – even under the most difficult conditions and in the most remote locations.

– We are creating a modern platform where all the world’s timber trade can use the same system for traceability. This means great opportunities for the global forest industry where all serious players are winners, says Bengt Sörvik, CEO of Otmetka.

Breakthrough in New Zealand

Otmetka’s decisive breakthrough came in 2019 when New Zealand’s forest industry, the world’s second largest roundwood supplier, got in touch and wanted to know more about Otmetka’s idea.

– The New Zealanders had concluded that Otmetka’s solution is the most practical and rational to remove all manual marking of timber during felling and onward transport. Because they are very environmentally conscious, they also did not want to use paint or other labeling methods. Therefore, only our system interested them. We now have an agreed collaboration with the New Zealand forest industry where the state also backs the project financially, says Bengt Sörvik.

Despite pandemic challenges and electronics delivery issues, the very first system, which consists of tools for marking, associated data management and reading codes, was able to be delivered to New Zealand by the end of the year. During 2023, the system will be tested out in the forest.

– After the end of the test period, Otmetka’s system will be introduced as a national standard in New Zealand. All of the country’s forest contractors must then use the system on a machine fleet that includes approximately 1,000 harvesting units. It’s a deal in the hundreds of millions SEK, says Bengt Sörvik.

Great interest from all over the world

The advantages of Otmetka’s solution are many. It enables the forest industry to better plan timber production, counteracts illegal logging, reduces the risk of money laundering and increases the value of the harvested forest. With the unique one-time codes, digitization can be introduced at log level with very high data security directly during felling. Gradually, additional information from different suppliers can be built into the system. Thanks to the GPS technology, the log is also automatically geographically traceable.

– We have crossed many thresholds and now things are going fast. I receive calls from all over the world and the interest in our technology is great in many countries. Business discussions are held with stakeholders in Chile, Australia, South Africa, Japan, the USA and Sweden, among others. Otmetka’s future looks very bright, says Bengt Sörvik.


Read the full article in the Swedish financial newspaper Dagens industri´s forest survey 13–25 December 2022

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