America’s Forests Can’t Wait for Better Treatment of Forest Products

WASHINGTON (February 22, 2012)—President Barack Obama, building on the “We Can’t Wait” theme, this week announced plans to dramatically increase the federal government’s purchase of biobased products and in doing so, attempt to increase jobs in rural America.

“We applaud the Administration’s efforts to increase the use of agriculture products and jobs in rural communities, but we need a guarantee that this effort will include forest products,” American Forest Foundation President and CEO Tom Martin said.

“America’s forests, owned in large part by families, are the backbone of rural communities across the country, supporting almost 1 million jobs. Including forest products in this program will create demand for these products, helping to bring back the 322,805 jobs we’ve lost in the forestry sector since 2005. With strong demand for forest products, the families who own America’s forests will be better able to conserve and manage them,” Martin said.

“In the past, most forest products, like hardwood flooring, have not qualified as ‘biobased’ products, even though they are largely made of bio-content. Other products that directly compete with these American products, like bamboo which is primarily imported, have been consider ‘biobased’,” Hardwood Federation Executive Director Deb Hawkinson said.

“In the last few years, more than 1,000 mills across rural America have been shuttered. We’ve seen the most dramatic losses in states like North Carolina, Indiana, Oregon, and Pennsylvania, which have each lost more than 10,000 jobs in the forest sector since 2005. Now is the time for the Administration and Congress to recognize the jobs and economic loss our rural communities have suffered and take steps to ensure that American-made forest products aren’t disadvantaged by biobased procurement requirements,” Hawkinson said.

Learn More About Job Losses Since 2005 in the Forest Sector.

Read President Obama’s Announcement.

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Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announces new planning rule

Today, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s intent in the issuing of a new planning rule to address America’s vast National Forest System of 193-million acres.  The Secretary stated the new planning rule: “seeks to deliver stronger protections for forests, water, and wildlife while supporting the economic vitality of our rural communities.”  The Secretary supports sound science to drive the decisions made at the local levels, with a philosophy of restoration of federal lands, and focus on healthy forests and water quality.

The Hardwood Federation will provide additional information on specific goals for timber harvest, which the US Forest Service is expected to address more fully over the next few weeks.  Please see the link below for a video on the announcement and the Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) for the National Forest System Land Management Planning Rule.

http://www.fs.fed.us/

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Maley & Wertz Merges High-Tech With Traditional Processing

By M.A. Wallace

Evansville, Ind. – Maley & Wertz provides Premium Indiana Hardwood to furniture makers and other wood-product manufacturers across the nation – and around the world. The company’s present day success is the accumulation of nearly 125 years of attention to quality in the finished product and a wealth of practical lumber industry knowledge.

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Maley & Wertz: A Century With NHLA

By Crystal Oldham

In 1885, Daniel Wertz chose to create his own path. One of seven brothers, Wertz went against the brotherly-tradition of farming and found his niche working with timber in a sawmill. He opened the Daniel Wertz Sawmill in Bartholomew County, IN.

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Maley & Wertz Takes Local Hardware to Global Level

By Vincent Pugliese / EBJ

While Daniel Wertz left the family farming business in the 1880s to start his own lumber company, the industry he entered still owes a lot to agriculture.

Today, Maley & Wertz Lumber Co. and its 45 employees continue to focus on providing Southern Indiana hardware to furniture makers and other wood-product manufacturers, but the scope of the company’s business has evolved to include a global perspective.

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