Capacity of sawmills and carpentry workshops for processing Lesser Used Species (LUS) in Ghana

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 14:04

In Ghana, the exploitation of timber is limited to a few of the over 300 known species. Majority of the species are not being utilized because their properties (including physical, mechanical and machining properties) are not known. Due to this, sawmills hardly process these lesser used species. To avoid the overexploitation of commercially known species the use of lesser known ones is inevitable. The objective of the study was to assess the capacity of the sawmills and carpentry workshops in terms of their machinery to process lesser used timber species for efficient utilization. Eight (8) of the sawmills in Kumasi, Ghana were randomly selected and questionnaires were administered and interviews conducted. Forty-five (45) carpenters granted interview and responded to questionnaires that were administered.The sawmills have the needed cutting and processing machinery for producing lumber from commercially known species but not the lesser known ones. Some sawmills expressed difficulty in sawing some lesser used timber species due to their extreme hardness and smaller diameter sizes even though they possess adequate strength for utilization. Most of the carpentry workshops (60%) use only simple hand tools for processing which makes the utilization of these lesser known species in construction very difficult. The use of advanced technology and efficient processing techniques need to be encouraged for the processing of these species. This will ensure efficient utilization in order to reduce the overexploitation of the commercial (traditional) timber species.

Responsible party
Forestry Research Institute of Ghana
Attachment Size
sawmill_capacity.pdf 145.82 KB