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Family Forest Owners' Commitment to Service Providers and the Effect of Association Membership on Loyalty

Wasterlund, Dianne Staal; Kronholm, Thomas


Long-term relationships with family forest owners willing to sell roundwood are important for the Nordic forest industry. Research has shown that customer loyalty is mediated by a sense of commitment to the service provider. At least two forms of commitment have been distinguished: affective commitment in the sense of liking the provider, and calculative commitment in the sense of being dependent on the provider. In Sweden, more than one third of family forest owners are members of a forest owners' association with the primary objective of supporting its members' profitability. The associations buy one third of the owners' roundwood. This study examined the role of different forms of commitment in the process of becoming loyal timber suppliers, and the moderating role of membership. A questionnaire was sent to forest owners who notified the authorities of a final harvesting operation involving timber procurement by an organization. The results show that both forms of commitment significantly affected loyalty and the forms were correlated. Members of forest owners' associations who sold their timber to the association expressed higher affective commitment and loyalty than other forest owners, indicating that a sense of member involvement is important for timber procurement by the associations.


Customer relationship management; Timber procurement; Affective commitment; Calculative commitment; Forest owners' associations; Forestry services

Publicerad i

Small-Scale Forestry
2017, Volym: 16, nummer: 2, sidor: 275-293