*adds further information about the project.
Retail forestry investment management company GWD Forestry has harvested its first crop of Christmas trees from projects developed in 2008.
The Mallorca-based firm has been developing properties in New Brunswick, Canada and establishing off-take agreements with retailers in Canada and the US.
This year marks the first harvest successfully supplied to these customers and the management firm even had to turn away retailer demand, according to a press release.
“Alongside the project seeing a stronger demand for trees than expected, wholesale prices have also so far been exceeded,” reads the release. “This has been a result partly due to the Canadian-US dollar exchange rate, alongside higher than projected prices having been received for individual trees.”
Average prices for the trees so far have been $20 each, according to Nigel Stack at GWD Forestry.
“The US Dollar has also increased substantially against the Canadian Dollar this year which has resulted in us seeing more value for our crops in Canadian terms with approximately 90 percent of our trees this year having been exported to the United States so this exchange rate has helped the success substantially,” he added.
The company is currently also raising funds for eucalyptus and coconut projects in Brazil.
Investors buy units for a minimum of $10,000 representing over an acre of Canadian land. The investment term is anywhere from six years, according to Stack, although there is some growing demand for “table top” trees which take just three years to grow in comparison.
“The mechanics of growing smaller trees does of course mean we could theoretically look at planting double the amount of trees per acre on dedicated areas however this is still something we are looking to develop as retailers start to become more aware of this forestry product,” said Stack. “At the moment this market is still in its infancy but we are seeing increasing interest for miniature Christmas trees among retailers and it could prove to be an exciting option for us to look at in the future.”
The company hopes that its success in Canada will help to gather investor interest for its other projects in Brazil, according to the release.