IKEA stores owner Ingka buys 10,840 acres of U.S. forest land

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Ingka Group, the owner of most IKEA stores, said on Thursday it had acquired more forest land in the United States as part of the world’s biggest furniture group’s goal to become carbon neutral by 2030.

Ingka Group said it had bought a 10,840 acre property, to be managed by investment arm Ingka Investments, in southeast Georgia from conservation organisation The Conservation Fund.

“The acquisition strengthens Ingka Group’s commitment to responsible forest management, as conservation measures are fully included in the forest management plans,” it said in a statement.

Ingka Group owns around 613,000 acres of forest land in Europe and in the U.S. states of Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama, Texas and Oklahoma.

It said in September it was planning 600 million euros ($730 million) of sustainability-related investments over 12 months.

Profits at brand owner Inter IKEA have grown as shoppers kept at home by the pandemic spent money saved by not going on holiday on furnishing.

IKEA operates through a franchise system, with Ingka Group the biggest franchisee to Inter IKEA.

($1 = 0.8223 euros)

Reporting by Helena Soderpalm; editing by Niklas Pollard