Me chame no WhatsApp Agora!

Nelson Sanches Bezerra Jr e Vanderlei Benedetti

Director and Forestry Coordinator at Equilíbrio Floresta


Focus on valuing forest quality

The world prominence of the Brazilian forest sector is due, among other techniques, to genetic improvement and operational management practices, developed by companies producing wood in recent decades. However, several factors lead us to believe that the evaluation of the quality of the implementation and maintenance activities of forestry projects also plays an important role in obtaining potential productivity and an adequate balance of production costs.

Despite this, there is great difficulty in measuring this role, even with all the support from the companies' boards for the operational excellence of their activities. Monitoring the quality of forest operations allows you to maximize the productivity target, keep costs within the limits determined by the company, guarantee the operations targets and evaluate the work of service providers or own operating teams, defining corrective actions and continuous improvement.

Almost all forest companies use quality systems to monitor the quality and productivity of their operations. Despite this, it is still necessary to improve the determination of the increase in costs and the reduction in productivity, linked to the low quality of forest formation. This quantification can be applied to each monitored operation, instead of weights, grades or isolated parameters and without a comparative level, since each company has developed its methods and sampling internally.

Despite the corporate evaluation among the companies and even with the application of quality tools known worldwide and disseminated by the forestry sector, it seems that the concept was applied inversely, that is, the operations to be monitored, the parameters, methods and intensities Sampling criteria, as well as compliance limits, were established before quantifying the effects of the quality of operations and inputs on productivity and costs.

The search for this concept cannot be carried out in isolation by a sector or department, since one of the basic needs to guide these results is the establishment of research projects, which include routine experimentation, from which cost-based productivity curves will be obtained. in increasing doses of fertilizers and other inputs, different proportional depths of soil preparation and fertilization, levels of survival of plantations and other parameters that can be quantified based on the loss of operational quality.

For this, the actions of the research area must be cohesive with those of quality, in obtaining and analyzing these data. Based on these results, the concepts and standards of forest management will be better defined, also helping to determine the cost of loss of quality, supported by experimentation and financial analysis. Therefore, we can determine ideal levels of compliance, based on a simulated financial analysis of the losses arising from deviations in the operation, which would act directly on the quality control of the field activity.

It is important to emphasize that, currently, to determine the compliance of an activity, there are normally predetermined values and, in some conditions, without analysis of the cost component. Thus, almost unanimously, the compliance percentage ranges are fixed and used similarly by different operations, companies and in different regional conditions.

Predetermined compliance values, without the support of research and experimentation, for an analysis of productivity versus cost, tend to reduce actions aimed at developing machines and processes and, consequently, impacting their evolution. Therefore, we cannot forget that the value of inputs, applied in different phases of the forest, varies, as well as the value of the wood itself. The behavior of a large part of the parameters evaluated by quality should also vary, and thus we will have conformities defined at each cycle, which would be based on the cost of inputs and operations, on the value of the wood, on the effect of quality on forest productivity.

It is important to point out that there cannot be a contradiction between production, target and quality, when managing operations to form high-productivity commercial forests. Thus, the appreciation of the service sector and labor, executors of operations, is directly linked to the success of high productivity forests. Recently, the evolution of data collection, transmission, generation and storage systems, in a more standardized and agile way, has contributed significantly to quality assessments.

In addition, new image technologies generated by satellites, radar or remotely piloted aircraft complement quality information as a driver or measurer. The emergence of new machines, with automatic adjustments and monitoring of doses and areas applied, also increases the use of new technologies that guarantee the quality of application of herbicides, fertilizers and other products. A process of creating an operational quality module, where routine experimentation and positive communication between the quality area and the forestry research area are fundamental for a monitoring system that seeks excellent results with forestry operations.

Another important aspect to be evaluated in a quality system, aiming at guaranteeing the information generated and analyzed, is the structuring and valuation of the operational quality monitoring teams. The search for trained professionals, constant training and remuneration compatible with the importance of the information gathered is essential for the representativeness of the information.

It is essential that the quality organizational structure has management, autonomy and independence from the operational sector, thus being able to contribute with corrective actions that improve the conditions of non-standard practices, directly in the field, and prevent the continuation of non-conformities.

Each company, in the formation of the quality system, must focus on its own regional reality, considering local variations so that the procedures and actions are involved with these particularities. Thus, the forestry quality system now encompasses characteristics, procedures and research on various conditions among and within these companies, continuously improving its level of operational excellence. Currently, there has been a significant increase in the use of forest quality tools and systems. This demonstrates the understanding of the forestry sector regarding the importance of monitoring and measuring quality, to guarantee the maximum performance of operations and, consequently, the formation of high productivity forests. However, as mentioned, we still have great opportunities for improvement regarding the implementation, maintenance and evolution of the tool.