- Benjamin, J. G.
University of Maine
The forest resources industry is an integral part of the economy, ecology, and culture of the Northern Forest region of New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. The forest products manufacturing industry provides over 92,000 jobs and $14.4 billion to the region (NEFA 2007). The logging sector of the forest resources industry provides significant employment to rural communities in addition to harvesting and transporting this valuable and renewable resource to processing facilities. Despite the importance of the logging sector, there have been relatively few studies in recent years that focused on logging businesses, and as noted by Egan et al. (2006), there are many hidden costs in timber harvesting and barriers to production. A labor shortage and an aging workforce have been projected for the logging industry, and numerous studies have been conducted to address recruitment (Pan Atlantic/Irland Group 1999, Egan & Taggart 2004, Egan 2005, Egan 2009). Based on a survey of logging business owners across the states of the Northern Forest, this report will describe business attributes and harvest operation details with an emphasis on existing logging infrastructure. This study is a baseline for future, periodic surveys that can be used to analyze trends in the logging industry, and a tool for logging contractors, policy makers, or professional organizations to identify areas for improvement in forest operations.