Comparison of Important Competitiveness Factors for Small- To Medium-Sized Forest Enterprises

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Economic and Workforce Development


Hardwood lumber is one of the most important commodity groups exported, and this exportation has had a significant impact oil the balance of trade in the United States. The production of hardwood lumber, however, has fallen 25 percent (more than 4 billion board feet per year) since 2000. The loss of employment opportunities throughout the United States from this sector has caused difficulties for many individuals and their communities. Unfortunatly, this disturbing development has now combined with the current global financial and economic crisis impacting the wood industry. The majority of U.S. sawmills are working harder to develop relationships with customers and are being more aggressive in searching for new markets. In this work, hardwood exporters and other hardwood lumber manufacturers were studied and compared to determine the factors associated with exporting. It was found that exporters differed significantly in their transportation methods, marketing activities, and production profiles from those of other hardwood lumber manufacturers. They also were significantly larger in their total production and employment. As the forest products industry continues to become more global, an analysis of the importance of these factors has Suggested how firms can begin exporting or increase sales in international markets.

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Forest Products Journal





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