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Articles by Seppo Ervasti

Category: Article

article id 7142, category Article
Seppo Ervasti. (1964). Suomen sahateollisuuden kausivaihtelu. 2. Tutkimustulokset. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 76 no. 2 article id 7142. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7142
English title: Seasonal variation in the sawmill industry of Finland II. Investigation results.

Seasonal variation in the sawmill industry of Finland was studied in an investigation based on questionnaires answered by a random sample of sawmills concerning the time period of 1958-1960. The method is described in detail in a separate article in Acta Forestalia Fennica issue 75 no. 1.

The seasonal variations in purchase of roundwood was largest in big sawmills, which purchase the main part of the timber as standing sales and buy most of the wood from the State Forest auctions at the end of September. Also, they can afford to reserve their material earlier than the smaller companies. The saw logs are mainly felled in the winter in Finland because the climatic conditions and availability of labour are best at that time. Small sawmills begin fellings a little earlier than the larger ones.

In long-transport of timber the proportion of floating decreased from 47% in 1958 to 38% in 1960. At the same time, proportion of truck transport increased from 48% to 55%. Small sawmills use almost exclusively land transport. They received almost three-fourths of their logs between January and May, because the sawing is concentrated in the first half of the year. Therefore, floating does not suit for their transport method. The larger the sawmill, the later is the seasonal peak of log deliveries. The output of the big sawmills is distributed more evenly thoughout the year. The smaller the sawmill, the quicker is the turnover of raw material and the smaller the sawlog inventories.

The seasonal variation in output is sharper at small sawmills where sawing is concentrated in the first half of the year. The seasonal peak of the early spring is due to the aim at getting the sawn wood to dry early enough for shipments in the summer. Air drying takes an average of 4 ½ months. Kiln drying is more common at the larger sawmills, and gives them more flexibility. Due to the large seasonal variation in operation, the capacity of the small mills is poorly utilized. Domestic sales of sawn wood levels up the seasonality of the deliveries. Export sales are concentrated at the end and turn of the year. Also, the seasonal peak of expenditure occurs in the winter, but that of income in the summer.

The PDF includes a summary in English.

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article id 7141, category Article
Seppo Ervasti. (1963). Suomen sahateollisuuden kausivaihtelu. 1. Aineiston hankinta ja käsittely sekä tulosten luotettavuus. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 76 no. 1 article id 7141. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7141
English title: Seasonal variation in the sawmill industry of Finland I. Collection and treatment of the material and reliability of the results.

The purpose of this paper is 1) to establish the possible seasonal variation of the different phases of work in the sawmill industry in Finland, 2) to study the internal and external factors influencing the seasonal character of the sawmill industry, 3) to study ha time lags between the work phases of the sawmill industry, 4) to analyse the seasonal nature of the industry’s money transactions, and 5) to give information concerning the factors influencing employment. The investigation is based on questionnaires of a random sample of sawmills concerning the time period of 1958-1960. This paper concentrates on the methods of the study, the results are reported in a separate paper in the Acta Forestalia Fennica issue 75 vol 1.

It was concluded that if seasonal variation in the sawmill industry is to be analysed on the scale it has been in the present work, sampling is the cheapest and most practicable method of collecting the material. If seasonal fluctuation of the industry is to be calculated by size classes, the sample must be allocated into strata by measuring the heterogeneity of the classes with a parameter illustrating seasonal variation. It might be useful to apply these parameters already when the total size of the sample is determined. For the smallest sawmills, for which practically all data have to be collected from primary documents, the most practical method is perhaps to send collectors to the spots. To the larger sawmills the questionnaire can perhaps be sent by mail. A moving index should be obtained for calculation of a seasonal index, but this demands long time series. The collection of the data is described in detail.

The PDF includes a summary in English.

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article id 7123, category Article
Seppo Ervasti. (1960). Moitteet ja välimiesmenettelyt Suomen sahatavaran viennissä. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 73 no. 1 article id 7123. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7123
English title: Claims and arbitration in exports of sawn goods from Finland.

This study concentrates on claims made against Finnish shippers or referred to arbitration by foreign buyers. The material is collected from two inquiries on claims and arbitrations, sent by the Finnish Sawmill Owners’ Association to Finnish sawmills engaged to exportation in 1954 and 1958.

On average the claims concerned about 5% of the sawn goods exported from Finland. They affected about 3% of the deliveries from the large sawmills, 10% of the deliveries of medium-sized sawmills and 15–20% of the small sawmills. In large consignments of raw material, variations in quality are not so marked as in smaller ones. Also, the grading of goods is stricter in the larger sawmills, and as they have well-established business relations, they have better opportunities to select goods with a view to demand of the buyer and the marketing areas.

The ratio of goods claimed was least in exports to remote countries, on the Western European markets in exports to Great Britain and the Netherlands. In Belgium, the ratio was high. In 1954 and 1958 approximately 12% of the claims were referred to arbitration. The bigger the sawmills, then on average the smaller the ratio of cases of arbitration in the number of claims. In Belgium, disputes have had to be settled by arbitration most frequently. Over 90% of the claims were made because of defects in quality or condition. About 5% were in respect of the specification of dimensions, and only 5% were related to other reasons than the good themselves. The sums paid for claims connected to the goods in 1958 represented only 54% of those demanded by the buyers. It would perhaps be advisable to consider the formulation of generally acceptable rules of the grading of export timber according to categories of shippers with definition of the minimum standard for each grade.

The PDF includes a summary in English.

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article id 7484, category Article
Seppo Ervasti. (1959). Suomen havusahatavaranmyynnin kausi- ja suhdannevaihteluista vuosina 1951-1958. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 68 no. 2 article id 7484. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7484
English title: On the seasonal and business cycle fluctuations of Finnish sawn softwood sales in 1951-1958.

The investigation examines export sales of Finnish sawn softwood sales in 1951-1958, concentrating on the volume of the sales. The material was collected from the archives of Finnish Sawmill Owner’s Association and the Finnish Sawmill Control Organization and the annual reports of the former. Correlation analysis was used in assessing the interdependence of the monthly sales volume and the price, and opening sales and the total sales volume of the year.

A slightly negative correlation was seen between the sale price and the monthly sales volume. Goods sold at under average prices are more abundant than goods sold at over average prices. Generally, with a rising price trend, the annual sales volume increased, but with falling prices the situation was reverse. The sales volume has been dependent on the business cycle development of prices. There was positive correlation between the opening sales and the total sales quantity for the year. The sales volume was at its maximum in the period between November and January, and at the minimum between March and September.

The time of the sales made to different countries differed little judged by quarterly statistics. It seems that the major shippers have generally concluded opening sales first. Northern Finnish shippers and the small shippers of Southern Finland have sold proportionately least during the last quarter. In general, the poorer the qualities in question the smaller on an average the proportion of opening sales but the greater the share of clearance sales.

The PDF includes a summary in English.

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article id 7480, category Article
Seppo Ervasti. (1958). Suomesta myydyn havusahatavaran hintasuhteiden muutokset vuosina 1932-38 ja 1951-56. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 67 no. 6 article id 7480. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7480
English title: Changes in the price ratios of sawn softwood sold by Finland in 1932-38 and 1951-56.

The aim of the investigation was to estimate the changes in the price ratios of different tree species of sawn timber, timber sizes and qualities, the ratios of the prices obtained by different shippers and from different countries, and their changes, especially the trends and business cycles. The data can be utilized in the organization of sawing and the drawing up of the price scales. The price ratios were calculated by taking 100 as the basic quantity and calculating the values for the other quantities accordingly, the values are called price indices. The data is collected from the sales reports in the archives of the Finnish Sawmill Owners’ Association.

Comparing the ratios of the basic prices, the prices of unsorted pine goods by shipper B (the leading marks of Northern Finland), were considerably higher than the others. The North Finnish pine goods are of the best quality in Finland. The price differences between the other shippers were small. The prices of unsorted spruce goods differed very little with different shippers. In some years the basic prices obtained for pine from different countries showed considerable differences although, in the overall view, the differences were small.

In the leading marks of Northern Finland, the differences between pine and spruce prices was greater than the other price differences. The quality of pine logs in Northern Finland is extremely high. During the periods of prosperity, the price difference between pine and spruce was relatively smaller than during depression. With spruce goods, the relative price difference for the qualities is smaller than with pine goods. For the both species the relative price differences diminished with the increase in the basic price. In the broadest sizes of unsorted pine goods, the price difference of the inch class is much bigger than in the small sizes. This is true especially for boards. The relative price difference between boards and battens increased distinctly with the advance in the basic price. A similar, though not as clear change took place in the price ratio of board and 7” sizes. The price differences between battens and boards are much smaller for spruce than for pine. The trends of the price indices of the different sizes show from the middle of 1920s and as far as the 9” u/s pine sizes very gentle, and in regards of the corresponding spruce sizes, a fairly sharp rising tendency.

The PDF includes a summary in English.

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article id 7462, category Article
Seppo Ervasti. (1955). Suomesta Pohjanmeren maihin vuosina 1920-1952 viety havusahatavara : koostumuksen muutokset. Acta Forestalia Fennica vol. 64 no. 2 article id 7462. https://doi.org/10.14214/aff.7462
English title: Export of sawn softwood from Finland to the North Sea Countries in 1920-1952.

The objective of the investigation was to study the trends and fluctuations in the composition of sawn goods, changes due to business cycles, and casual fluctuations. The subject is confined to sawn softwood export to Great Britain, the Netherlands, Belgium and France (The North Sea countries) in 1920-1952. The data was based mainly on statistics of the Board of Customs, Series of Foreign Trade, Finnish Sawmill Owner’s Association and the Finnish Official Statistics.

The North Sea countries took 75-85% of the sawn softwood exported from Finland before World War II, and 50-70% of the quantity exported since the war. Sawn softwood export from Finland is almost exclusively long and small-dimension timber. The composition of the export from Finland to the North Sea countries was defined already during the 1900th century, and no big chances were observed even during the period of 1920-1952. The only definite trend was decrease in the proportion of u/s grade.

The PDF includes a summary in English.

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article id 4694, category Article
Seppo Ervasti. (1960). Metsäntuotteet Ison-Britannian rakennusaineiden mainonnassa. Silva Fennica no. 104 article id 4694. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a9133
English title: The position of forest products in advertising of building materials in Great Britain.

This paper concentrates on analysing advertising of building materials used in residential, agricultural and factory building, power station construction, warehouse building and the joinery industry in Great Britain, concentrating on advertising to consumers, including architects, engineers, building entrepreneurs, farmers and do-it-yourself practitioners. The material is based on questionnaires answered by 8 professionals of the field, and assessment of two leading English paper in the field of construction in January 1 – June 30, 1959.

It was concluded that forest products were clearly less advertised than other building materials. The unweight average degree of advertising of all forest products was. 1.7, while the score was 2.6 for other materials. Of the different forest products stand out advertising of plywood and sawn good. The most extensively advertised materials were metals, concrete and cement, and some covering materials. Forest products accounted only ¼ of the advertising space in the publications.

The most important media used in advertising building materials were trade journals, calendars and yearbooks, courses and lectures, exhibitions and fares and direct advertising. The most important audience of advertising were architects, followed by the entrepreneurs. It is suggested that the advertising of Finnish products in Great Britain might be best organized by placing it in the hands of two organizations: the sales organisation and a separate body for advertising. The producers would manage the advertising of individual brands to sales level, while the other levels (agents, importers, merchants) would manage the joint advertising of the forest products to the lower sales levels and consumers. A Finnish market research and information offices might be established in Great Britain.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

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article id 4724, category Article
Seppo Ervasti, Lauri Heikinheimo, Viljo Holopainen, Kullervo Kuusela, Gustaf Sirén. (1965). The development of Finland's forests in 1964-2000. Silva Fennica no. 117 article id 4724. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a14282

The Economic Council asked Heikinheimo, Holopainen and Kuusela to prepare a report on the development of Finland’s forest resources up to the beginning of the next century. The expansion of forest industry beyond the level foreseen in earlier forecasts, the large-scale removal and neglect of the basic improvements required have weakened the condition of the wood production to such an extent that extensive measures are needed to ensure the continuity of the supply of wood. The results of the calculations are formed in three separately analysed alternatives.

Alternative I: Realisation of the Teho programme and the removal corresponding to it. The development of the growing stock according to the programme would only permit a cut amounting to an annual drain of ca. 51 million m3 up to the year 2000. After that it would be possible gradually to increase the removal. This drain would not itself to utilise fully the already existing production capacity of the industry.

Alternative II: Consequences of the predicted removal if the Teho programme is realised as such. The wood utilization forecast based on the premises given to the team show that the annual drain will grow in 1964–1975 from 52 to 58 million m3, and thereafter by 0.5% annually. This would lead to over-cutting, and exhaust the present growing stock by the turn of the century. If annual total drain of ca. 58 million m3 would after 1975 be sufficient, exhaustion of the growing stock would be postponed for 4–5 years.

Alternative III. Teho programme expanded in conformity with the removal forecast. A new programme is proposed, which includes, among others, large scale fertilization of fully grown firm forest land at about the rate of 100,000 ha/year, intensified artificial regeneration, assurance of the supply of planting stock and seed, increase of forest drainage from the present 155,000 to 250,000 ha/year by 1970, site preparation of the cutting areas for artificial regeneration, increase of tending or seeding stands to 300,000 ha/year, replacement of fuelwood by other fuels, increase of wood import and new forest roads.

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  • Kuusela, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Sirén, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 4682, category Article
Seppo Ervasti. (1959). Suomen metsäteollisuuden laajentamismahdollisuudet tuotteiden käytön kehityksen kannalta. Silva Fennica no. 97 article id 4682. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a14127
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