Is the forest products industry important to Mississippi's economy?
In a word "yes." Forestry and the forest products industry are economically important to Mississippi in several ways:
- About 65 percent of Mississippi's land is in forest. This is about 19.6 million acres according to the latest forest survey taken in 2006.
- The value of Mississippi’s timber harvest has exceeded $1 billion each year since 1993 and reached an all-time record of 1.45 billion in 2005.
Mississippi's forest products industry consists of four major sectors:
- Solid Wood Products, which includes pine and hardwood lumber, plywood, poles, oriented strand board, and other "composite" forest products.
- Pulp and Paper, which includes fine writing papers, "liner-board" used for cardboard boxes, tissue and absorbent papers, and market pulp.
- Wood furniture and related products, which consists mostly of upholstered wood furniture such as couches, love seats, and recliners.
- Timber harvesting, which includes the harvesting and transportation sector.
According to a 2008 study by James Henderson and Ian Munn of MSU:
- The total industry output of Mississippi's forest products industry generates an economic impact of nearly $17.4 billion annually.
- The forest products industry accounts for $7.1 billion annually in value added economic impact for the state.
- The Mississippi forest products industry contributes to 8.3% of all jobs in Mississippi. An estimated 123,659 full or part-time jobs have their "roots" in Mississippi's forest products industry. (This total includes direct, indirect, and induced employment).
- In terms of wages and salaries paid annually, Mississippi's forest products industry generates a statewide economic impact of $4.4 billion.
- In 2007, Mississippi's forest landowners, mostly private, non-industry owners, collected $630.8 million for their standing timber sold that year.
Timber is an important agricultural crop in the local economy of virtually every Mississippi County outside the Delta. In any year, timber will be among the top three most valuable agricultural crops in 65 to 70 counties out of 82 total counties in Mississippi.
RAYMOND, Miss. -- New landowners can learn about managing timberland for profit during a five-part short course in May.
Forestland as an Investment will be offered May 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 at the Mississippi State University Extension Service office in Forrest County. It starts at 6 p.m. and ends at 8 p.m. each night. The Extension office is located at 952 Sullivan Drive in Hattiesburg.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Markets for Mississippi’s sawtimber and pulpwood are bouncing back from the economic recession, but the industry is not improving across the board.
“Slowly but surely, markets for sawtimber are beginning to grow again after the sharp declines seen after the collapse of the U.S. housing market and the ensuing recession,” said James Henderson, associate Extension professor of forestry at Mississippi State University. “But the closing of the International Paper mill in Courtland, Ala. will have an impact on north Mississippi’s pulpwood markets.”
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi’s forest products bounced back into the No. 2 spot in the state’s list of agricultural commodities based on annual production values.
James Henderson, associate Extension professor in the Mississippi State University College of Forest Resources, estimated the state’s forest products 2013 harvest value to be $1.17 billion, compared to the 2012 value of $1.02 billion. That is a 14.6 percent increase over the 2012 harvest. Final figures will be available in February.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – The Mississippi State University Extension Service will offer timber tax workshops Feb. 28 in Raymond, March 1 in Coffeeville and March 29 in Oxford.
Landowners, certified accountants, consulting foresters and loggers are invited to participate in the Income Taxes and Family Forest short course. Topics include changes to capital gains tax law, basics of basis, record keeping, timber sales income, recovery of reforestation costs, casualty losses, strategic tax planning, tax forms and information sources.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – It’s not the heat or drought but the economy, specifically poor housing starts, that are causing grief for Mississippi’s forestry industry in 2011.
James Henderson, forestry economist and management specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said the slow economy is hurting the industry.
“There’s no good news for the pulpwood markets, and pine saw timber prices are the lowest they’ve been since the national housing construction downturn started in 2006,” Henderson said.