Hamish Macleod, managing director of Howie Forest Products and chair of Forestry Commission Scotland’s national committee, and George McRobbie of UPM Tilhill are among 16 people appointed to the Woodland Expansion Advisory Group.

The aim of the government-appointed group is to help identify which types of land are best suited for tree planting. It is chaired by Andrew Barbour, who farms in Perthshire and is also a woodland adviser to Atholl Estates, and also includes experts in conservation, community and land.

Announcing the group, environment and climate change minister Stewart Stevenson said there were competing demands for land in Scotland for both planting trees and for food production.

“To ensure both these vital sectors can flourish we need to look for practical long-term solutions. The work of this group will be instrumental in informing the future direction on planting and land use,” he said.

Minutes of all the group’s meetings will be made public via Forestry Commission Scotland’s website. It is to make its final report by March next year.