In June 1972 a group of professional and amateur dendrologists met in Bergen, Western Norway, and established the Nordic Arboretum Committee NAC (then called NAU, Nordisk Arboret Utvalg). This first Nordic Arboretum Meeting was convened by the Milde Arboretum and close contacts were established with dendrologists in other Nordic countries.

The Committee got a flying start with generous grants from the Nordic Cultural Foundation as well as a number of contributions from private and public funds in the Nordic countries (Denmark including the Faeroe Islands and Greenland, Finland including the Aaland Islands, Iceland, Norway and Sweden). This enabled the NAC to arrange seed- and plant-collecting expeditions to different parts of the world in 1974-1976: New Zealand and Australia, Southern South America, Japan and South Korea. This material including several thousands of plants with known origin has enriched the northern horticulture in several countries but much of the plants still hide in the collections of arboretas waiting for proper testing and evaluation.

In addition to the purchase and share of new plant material NAC has been the major forum connecting the arboretas in the northwestern Europe. Annual meetings, seminars and excursion have created and maintained contacts between institutions and professionals.