Greensboro, NC – Columbia Forest Products has launched a new web portal with resources to help forestland owners manage and improve the performance of their forest land holdings.

Jim Sitts, Columbia’s Appalachian Timber Manager, said that “it hasn’t been easy for a landowner in the Southern Appalachian region to access help in managing their timber holdings responsibly. Many folks think a detailed forest management plan, let alone an FSC Certified forest management plan, is unobtainable due to the modest size of their property and they presume it’s expensive.

“But In the ten years since the inception of our Forest Management program, Columbia has enrolled over 35,000 acres of forest land. We have worked with gentlemen farmers, hunting clubs and conservation organizations that maintain forestlands for multiple uses. They are all surprised and pleased with the results of working within Columbia’s sourcing group to secure the benefits of long term professional forest management,” Sitts added.

The new web content explains that Columbia maintains an FSC forest management certificate and invites forestland owners to contact a Columbia forester to learn more about their markets for logs and the group forest management opportunities under the Forest Stewardship Council’s guidelines and principles that Columbia now offers.

Jim also added “Columbia provides a professional forest management plan document at no charge to qualifying forest land owners in exchange for the first right of refusal when the timber is ready to harvest. There is no risk to inquire and learn more so we hope timberland owners respond and give us a call.”

Planning is underway to expand this program to other wood baskets located around Columbia’s other plywood and veneer mills and more notices on progress will be forthcoming as the legwork is completed. The company sees demand for FSC wood increasing because of many green building programs, and environmentally conscious consumers who demand wood certified to the standards of the Forest Stewardship Council.

According to Jim, “the idea is to supplement our timber purchases with wood from many smaller tracts. Over time, this will translate into a lighter, local footprint in the sourcing radius of each Columbia plywood mill where the program is in place.”

About the Forest Stewardship Council

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an international, non-profit organization that assures environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable forest management through independent third-party certification and labeling of wood, paper and other forest products. FSC’s on-product labeling allows businesses and consumers to choose products from well-managed forests—those that are managed to meet the social, economic and ecological needs of present and future generations.

About Columbia Forest Products

Founded in 1957, Columbia Forest Products is North America’s largest manufacturer of hardwood plywood and hardwood veneer, a leader in sustainable forestry, and innovator of formaldehyde-free PureBond? technology.

Columbia’s decorative interior veneers and panels are used in cabinetry, furniture, architectural millwork and commercial fixtures. Employee-owned and based in Greensboro, North Carolina, Columbia employs more than 2,000 and operates facilities throughout the United States and Canada, and a global operational network.

Source: Columbia Forest Products

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