Commercial forestry refers to the use of land for planting, maintaining and growing trees for commercial production of timber or other forest products from plantation or natural forest. Forests provide us with a large number of commercial goods and services for domestic purposes such as firewood, fodder, food, fertilizer, fiber, timber, and medicine for industrial purposes such as timber, plywood, fibre board, gum, resin, rubber, pulp and paper production. Apart from commercial forestry provision of commercial goods, services and domestic uses also has many roles in Tanzania such as


Industrialization refers to the process of widespread development of industries in a region or country. Commercial forestry play role in Tanzania industrialization through forest products such as timber and poles which can be processed in the industries such as sawmills like Saohill industries, kilombero valley, pulp and paper from pulp and paper industries such as Mufindi paper industry, furniture from the timber hence furniture factories such as imara furniture factory in Moshi and vuyisilemini furniture factory in Morogoro, also honey bees and beeswax which can be obtained through apiary establishment and products such as beeswax can be used to produce candles, other forest products such as rubber and oil also contribute to industrialization by providing raw materials for processing industries.

Rural development

Rural development refers to the process of improving the quality of life and economic well-being of people living in rural areas, often relatively isolated and sparsely populated areas. Rural development mainly centred on the exploitation of land-intensive natural resources such as agriculture and forestry which involves the development of infrastructure, poverty alleviation, improvement of education and employment. All those are contributed by commercial forestry due to the presence of forest plantation and industries such as furniture factories, sawmills, pulp and paper industries in rural areas which create employment opportunities, business such as hotels and restaurants while other people engage in activities such as agriculture and investments like private-owned plantations hence raising the living standard of the community and improvement of infrastructure such as roads for easy access for transporting forest products, commodities in the community and service provision like medical.


Electrification refers to the process of powering by electricity, spreading electric supply from region to the household level in the rural areas. Commercial forestry play role in Tanzania electrification process by easing the process of spreading electricity to the rural areas due to the provision of forest products such as poles which used to support overhead power lines and various other public utilities such as electrical cables, fiber optic cables, and related equipment such as transformers, also electrification in areas where forestry activities are conducted like factories and offices whereby nearby communities get access to electricity also.

Renewable energy source

Commercial forestry leads to the provision of renewable energy such as organic charcoal from the sawdust and the remains from the sawmills and furniture factories which reducing deforestation and raising awareness about the environmental pollution by illegal charcoal contributing to the positive impact on biodiversity and environmental conservation.

Trade and economy

Commercial forestry play role in Tanzania trade and economy through forestry trade and markets did in the country and outside through exportation such as poles and timber which contribute to the country’s economy by tax collection from the companies, organization and institutions engaging on forestry activities by owning plantation, factories, timber yards and selling forest products and also foreign currency is obtained when exportation is done.

Natural resources proper management

Due to forestry trade and market success caused by market availability and high demand for forest products such as timber, poles, gum, resin, honey bee, beeswax, pulp and paper lead to the need for proper and sustainable management of forest resources to avoid overexploitation of such natural resources by the government. Due to the contribution of the forestry sector in the country and danger of overexploitation with its impact on economy and environment such as environmental destruction which leads to global warming, loss of biodiversity, destruction of catchment areas hence water availability problems the proper and sustainable management of the natural resource is implemented.

Healthy and Medical purposes

The role of commercial forestry in healthy and medical purposes is through the provision of forestry products such as honey bees, fruits such as avocado and also forests are the rich reserve of compounds that can be used for medical purposes, forest trees and other plants contain a wide variety of bioactive compounds with potential as anticancer drugs and antioxidants while fruits provide nutrient and diet to human such as avocadoes. For example, alder tea can be used to wash wounds, the bark of the root of an apple tree is used for fever and juniper can be used in herbal incense.

Peace and security

In areas where forestry activities are conducted such as plantations, factories and timber yards there is the presence of security of the offices and all the properties on such areas also there are government services and offices such as police stations and court areas hence the establishment of peace and security to the nearby communities due to many activities conducted on such area and presence of expensive materials such as machines in the factories like furniture factories, sawmill, pulp and paper industries hence due to the presence of security services like patrolling, police stations and courtrooms lead to the establishment of peace and security through law and order.

Agricultural development

Commercial forestry promotes agricultural activities through taungya system and the production of biochar, whereby taungya is the forest management system whereby villagers and sometimes forest plantation workers are given the right to cultivate agricultural crops during the early stages of forest plantation establishment. Cultivation is often allowed to continue until trees shade crops due to canopy closure, this enables people to obtain peace of fertile lands for agricultural practices. production of biochar which is a stable solid that is rich in carbon produced by pyrolysis of biomass in the absence or little presence of oxygen used as soil amelioration, reduce acidity, increase soil water holding capacity and due to its ability to retain soil nutrients for long periods of time, biochar reduces the need for chemical fertilizers and improving soil fertility which stimulates plants growth.

Furniture, building materials and scenery beauty

Commercial forestry leads to the provision of furniture’s such as tables, chairs, wardrobes and carved ornaments from the wood also building materials such as timber for roofing, wooden bridges, plywood for roofing and flooring also from the commercial forestry there is high management of the forest management hence scenery beauty of such area where people are attracted to visit and take pictures even recording music videos by the musicians or actors attracted to shoot their movies in such beautiful environment.

Social development

Commercial forestry play role in social development by helping the community in social development activities such as building schools, increasing the number of desks or provision of building materials such as timber. Also the provision of social services such as water from the forest area where many of water sources are found and improvement of medical facilities and services such as hospitals hence attracting more people to settle on such areas and conducting in many different economical activities to raise their living standard all together supporting the development of such areas both economically and socially.

Recycling of waste

Commercial forestry participate in the recycling of waste such as waste papers such as cardboard, greeting cards, napkins, toilet paper and office papers which caused environmental pollution when scattered or burnt hence causing air pollution but through commercial forestry, waste paper is recycled to the new paper product which contributes to a reduction on numbers  of trees to be cut and used as raw materials for the pulp and paper production hence conserving environment and diversity  

Prepared by VITUS FUNGA


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