Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : Forestry funds open to boost biodiversity and futureproof forests against pests, diseases and climate change [March 2023]

The press release issued by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on 13 March 2023.

  • £4m funding will enable innovative projects to enhance tree planting stocks and woodland resilience to help meet Government net zero by 2050 ambitions
  • Funding will support multi billion pound sector to create new markets for wood products, driving trade and growing the economy

Applications for the Forestry Commission delivered Woods into Management Forestry Innovation Funds and the Tree Production Innovation Fund have today (13 March) reopened to further support expansion and management of our nation’s trees and forests and futureproof them against stresses like pests, disease and climate change.

This year, almost £4 million will be allocated to successful applicants across both funds, which together boost nature regeneration efforts, promote biodiversity, and support innovative approaches to tree production, tree health, and woodland resilience through increased and improved active management of woodlands, amidst a changing climate.

As tree planting across the country increases, the Tree Production Innovation Fund will support the development and deployment of new technologies and ways of working which will provide a diverse supply of healthy young trees. This will support Government ambitions to treble tree planting rates by the end of this Parliament and plant 30,000 hectares of trees across the UK per year by 2025.

The announcement comes ahead of the new woodland episode of the BBC wildlife documentary Wild Isles, presented by Sir David Attenborough, that will explore how ecosystems and habitats support wildlife around the UK, including the importance of protecting our woodlands.

Richard Stanford, Chief Executive, Forestry Commission, said:

“Our trees and forests are under threat from climate change, pests and diseases.  Trees have to be resilient for the very long term of their lives and we need to innovate to ensure the woods we have, and those we must grow, thrive.”

“The projects supported through these funds are essential in supporting efforts to build larger, more diverse and more resilient treescapes across the country and I strongly encourage all suitable projects to apply today.”

The Woods into Management Forestry Innovation Funds aims to bring an additional 20,000 hectares of existing woodland into active management, which can help boost biodiversity and protect against pests and diseases. The fund will also support projects which will develop new technologies and working practices to help homegrown timber production meet domestic and international demand.

This will help to bolster timber security and grow the United Kingdom’s forestry and primary wood processing sectors, which support 30,000 jobs and contribute over £2 billion to our economy every year.

The third round of the Woods into Management Forestry Innovation Funds and the Tree Production Innovation Fund are now open. The closing date for the Tree Production Innovation Fund is Tuesday 9th May. The closing date for the Woods into Management Forestry Innovation Funds is Monday 15th May.

Forestry Commission are hosting webinars to support with the application process. To sign up to a webinar, for further information about the funds and to apply visit:

Tree Production Innovation Fund – GOV.UK (

Woods into Management Forestry Innovation Funds – GOV.UK (