Our forestry concessions are strictly regulated with annual permit cuts: No harvesting is permitted of trees with trunks less than 40cm or the largest 5 percent of trees. In addition there is a closed season for cutting between January and March each year.
This system is more challenging but there are significant ecological benefits. The remaining forest with uneven stands exhibit higher levels of vertical structure (key for many species of birds and mammals), have higher levels of carbon sequestration, and produce a more constant flow of market and non-market forest resources than even-aged stands
The largest 5 percent replenish the stock having the highest distribution of seed-pods. Our timber management ethos is specifically designed to leave the forest in the same shape when we hand it back in 50 years as when we inherited it. Not only is this what we believe in, but it is also what buyers are increasingly prioritising, setting the standard for future timber business.
Argento aims to sustainably consolidate its economic development, while helping to ensure that the forests entrusted to it are protected. Among other features, our commitments are reflected in chain of custody and legality verification and certification systems across all our concessions. Our actions are supported by the close partnerships established with local and international NGOs.
Argento will leverage its sister company's expertise in Agriculture to explore and develop Agroforestry in Mozambique. Agroforestry is a land-use system in which forest plantations are integrated with farm crops on the same land. Under the right conditions, agroforestry can be advantageous over conventional forestry production through equal, or even increased timber productivity, combined with agro product revenues, as well as the clear regional economic, environmental and social benefits.
Mozambique needs foreign investment. Under pressure from the IMF, World Bank and Sovereign Wealth Funds (notably Norway) Mozambique has joined the global crackdown on illegal or aggressive logging. Forest Department Administrators (Fiscals) police forestry operations and enforce the strict controls on cut rates, and tree sizes. It is relatively easy to police with spot checks on trunk sizes at our camp and often several times en route to the port. Fines for non compliance are heavy.