IKEA makes footprints in New Zealand

 November 2021   
IKEA makes footprints in New Zealand

A 5500ha sheep and beef station in the Catlins has been earmarked for forestry development by Ingka Group, one of 12 different groups of companies that own Swedish furniture and homeware giant IKEA. 

Following recent approval by the Overseas Investment Office, it will start with an area of 330ha at Wisp Hill, in the Owaka Valley, which will be planted with radiata pine seedlings.

The long-term plan is to have a total of 3000ha — more than three million seedlings — planted in the next five years and the remaining 2200ha will ‘‘naturally regenerate into native bush’’, says the company.

Ingka Group owns about 248,000ha of forestry in the United States, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Romania. Between September 2019 and August 2020, the Group planted close to seven million seedlings.

Ingka Investments Managing Director, Krister Mattsson, says the company is delighted to expand its forestry portfolio into a new country.

Wisp Hill is owned by Southland brothers Leonard and Graham Ward, who have a manager running it. A lease-back requirement will allow the Ward family to properly phase out their operations over a minimum three-year period.

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