The forest owner cooperatives in Sweden were established almost a century ago with the aim to improve the private forest owners’ bargaining situation and improve silviculture (the study, cultivation, and management of forest trees). The characteristics of today’s private forest owners and forest industry are changing, something which should encourage the forest owner cooperatives to consider adaptations of their organizations. The aims of this paper are, first, to describe characteristics of forest owner cooperative members and second, to probe the applicability of farm cooperative research in this venture. The statements that are tested are based on characteristics established in farm cooperative research and refer to (i) a negative relation between forest cooperative member’s age and property size, (ii) a positive relation between member’s age and proportion of trade accomplished through the cooperative, (iii) a positive relation between member’s age and membership in cooperative boards and committees, and, finally, (iv) a positive relation between property size and resignation from the forest cooperative. The hypotheses were tested on data from Norra Skogsägarna, a forest cooperative in northern Sweden. None of the propositions found support in the data. The results thus indicate that forest cooperative members may differ from farm cooperative members in several respects. The premise is put forward that this may be due to differences between forest and farm owners’ situations with respect to market characteristics and investment intensity, something that can affect membership expectations.


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