Canadian Forest Service Publications

A market study of the Southeast United States. 1995. The Western Canadian Wood Machinery and Services Export Assoc. Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service, Pacific Forestry Centre, Victoria, BC. Working Paper WP-OI-95.08, copublished by the BC Ministry of Forests.

Year: 1995

Issued by: Pacific Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 4182

Language: English

Series: Working Paper WP (PFC - Victoria)

Availability: PDF (download)

Mark record


The forestry sector in the Southeast United States is extremely large with a total softwood and hardwood resource totaling 74 million hectares. The softwood southern yellow pine forests total 30 million hectares, nine times the cumulative amount of pine plantations in Chile, New Zealand and Australia. The current softwood harvest is 150 million cubic metres, ten times the current harvest levels in Chile or New Zealand. The Southeast US produces 35 million cubic metres of softwood lumber, slightly more softwood lumber than the sawmilling sector in British Columbia. Lumber production is expected to continue to expand from improved recoveries at the mill level, leading to an increase in demand for log recovery technology, particularly scanning and optimization.

The hardwood harvest in the Southeast is 82 million cubic metres. There are more hardwood sawmills in the Southeast than softwood mills, although production levels are generally lower. The hardwood sector supplies significant market opportunities for equipment suppliers. Nine new OSB facilities will require a total investment of approximately US $400 million.

There are some niche market opportunities for Canadian consulting and engineering companies. The harvesting sector is under mechanized and as the market expands the demand for engineering expertise from outside the local market will increase. Improved profitability in the sawmill sector will increase green field projects, plant modernizations and equipment upgrades. The total anticipated capital investment in the Southeast wood products sector is expected to be US $600-700 million over the next three years. With the exception of companies that have a niche market product, it is essential that Canadian companies develop a local operation and focus on service and long-term support.