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Benefits for the economy and production

The Benefits

Trees can bring many practical and productive benefits to a wide range of farms: 

Supporting food production 

Planting trees doesn’t have to mean giving up large areas of agricultural land. When planned carefully, it can support, and even enhance current production. There are now grants available for planting on as little as 0.1 hectares. This means we can help secure funding for shelterbelts, field corners, orchards and hedgerows.  

Improving agricultural land 

Well-designed planting plans can help you to manage the soil and its nutrients. It can also protect against erosion, improve water quality, reduce farm pollution and the risk of flooding.   

Improving biodiversity  

Trees can support a huge range of plants and animals, particularly as they get older and more established. Planting trees can also help connect woodland habitats, offer nesting opportunities for birds, and encourage an abundance of pollinating insects. All of which are critical to supporting the productivity of your land.  Trees are also home to predators of many common crop pests and can potentially reduce the need for pesticides.  

Diversifying your income 

You can generate additional income with products such as timber, fruits and nuts, and firewood. It could also offer opportunities for recreation and leisure.   

Selling carbon credits 

If you are planning a large-scale woodland, you can gain carbon units to sell. This can generate long-term income or you can use them to offset your carbon emissions.   

Mitigating climate change  

Trees act as a natural ‘carbon sink’ by removing and storing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Planting trees on your land can play an important role in helping to tackle climate change. 


Historically, agriculture and forestry have often been viewed as separate. In reality, many farmers already manage areas of trees that would be too small to be classified as woodland. These include:

  • traditional orchards
  • hedgerows
  • shelterbelts, and
  • individual, or groups of trees in fields

Agroforestry is simply defined as farming with trees. Integrating trees into existing agricultural systems can bring a range of benefits. These include:

  • improving livestock welfare
  • enhancing soil health and water quality, and
  • reducing erosion

They also offer opportunities for diversifying the farm business. 

Forest for Cornwall is currently supporting farmers across the county to introduce agroforestry on their farms. These videos show how farmers are using a variety of different agroforestry systems: 



Find out more about how we can support you to plant trees:

Farmers and Landholders

Communities and Groups

Climate Change

The impacts of climate change will not only affect our landscape and nature but also our financial health. Planting now will help to mitigate the effects that climate change is already having on our environment. Current production levels can be more easily maintained when some changes are made to land management practices.  

New tree planting is being carried out with the future in mind. Planting local tree species, as well as some non-native trees, will provide some resilience to changes in weather patterns. In addition, the trees will provide vital habitats and corridors for wildlife to shelter and forage in. Wood and timber products are becoming increasingly important as we move away from oil-based products. The trees planted today will help to provide the building materials and heating resources needed in a Net Zero society.

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