As in the majority of Western European countries, non-industrial forest ownership dominates in Finland. Private persons, ordinary Finnish citizens, own about 60% of all the forestry land. The Government owns 25%, forest industries 10%, and municipalities and parishes 5% of the Finnish forested area.
Private forest estates are relatively small, one estate being an average of 30 hectares. The number of private forest holdings of at least two hectares is about 347,000. Private forestry has a key role in Finland, because 80% of Finnish wood used by the forest industry comes from privately owned forests.
Metla conducts research on the effects of various means of forest policy on the silvicultural and timber harvesting behaviour of non-industrial private forest owners.