Romanian virgin forests become furniture in the homes of rich Europeans

A comprehensive reportage released last week by France 2 shows how the large furniture manufacturers in the world, which claim to promote responsible management of forests, are purchasing illegally harvested timber from Romanian forests.
The ‘Cash Investigation’ journalists started from a common sofa, produced by Ikea and followed the production chain which led them to Romania, the site where the pieces of furniture are produced and wherefrom the timber is supplied. Ikea sofas made of virgin wood in Tarcul Mountains, Caras Severin County (south-western Romania).
Throughout the investigation the journalists’ companion was Gabriel Paun, chairman of Agent Green, one of the most active environment organisations fighting for stopping the logging of the virgin forests in Romania. Paun admits he worked with the French journalists for two years. “The idea was rather simple. We went to a virgin forest, we followed the timber down to the storage house, from there to the company which cut it, to a factory in Sebes, further on to a storage house in Cluj and from there on to the entire planet, where the timber becomes furniture,” Paun said, according to
He added there are problems with the legal and with the illegal logging of forests. The legal ones are also abusive, irrespective of the form of property, state of private. “We do not agree with most of the forestry agreements. The cut is above the level of manufacturing, generally, and is done poorly.”
Paun also says Romsilva (the national forestry company) looks only at the economic issues and ignore the conservation ones. Romsilva makes abuses knowingly and with the complicity of the Forest Guard.

Read full article in Romania Journal.


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