Professional education a focus of Pennsylvania forest products expo

University Park, Pa. -- Loggers, sawmill operators, value-added processors and forest landowners in Pennsylvania and surrounding states can get valuable business and operational knowledge by attending the Forest Products Equipment and Technology Exposition, June 3-4.

Hosted by the Pennsylvania Forest Products Association in partnership with Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences and School of Forest Resources, the event will be held at the Ag Progress Days site at Rock Springs, on Pa. Route 45, nine miles southwest of State College. For those using GPS for directions, the address is 2710 W. Pine Grove Rd., Pennsylvania Furnace, Pa.

Parking, admission and all activities are free for attendees.

The leading hardwood-producing state in the nation, Pennsylvania is home to more than 2,700 forest-product companies and 500,000 forest landowners. The state's forest-products industry employs a workforce of about 60,000 and has annual revenues exceeding $5.5 billion.

Known as Timber 2011, the biennial equipment and technology trade expo will offer a variety of educational workshops with information critical to business success, according to Paul Lyskava, Pennsylvania Forest Products Association executive director.

"Timber 2011 once again has an excellent series of seminars covering financial, marketing, management and regulatory issues facing forest products companies," said Lyskava, who noted that a featured seminar is a presentation on the proposed national Hardwood Check-off Program.

"Later this year, sawmills and hardwood companies across the country will be asked to vote on establishing a commodity check-off program to fund collective marketing and research efforts," he said. "Other commodities such as milk, beef, pork and cotton have funded successful marketing efforts or developed new competitive products with the revenue produced through a check-off."

Workshops also will cover Pennsylvania Department of Transportation road posting and bonding; U.S. forest products industry and economic outlook; how to retain top employees; interim Tier 4 emissions standards and their impact on industry; complying with emerald ash borer quarantine regulations; wood demand outlook; improving timber security to minimize potential losses; the Tax Relief Act of 2010 and estate/gift tax planning; and effective communication of logging interests for engaging in the political process.

Seminars will qualify for Pennsylvania SFI continuing-education credits. Three hours of training must be attended during the two days of the show. The complete schedule of workshops is available at http://agsci.psu.edu/timber/events-1 online.

The Ag Progress Days site -- at Penn State's Russell E. Larson Agricultural Research Center -- is centrally located for most of the state's forest-products industry. Timber 2011 manager Bob Oberheim of Penn State said the site has both indoor and expansive outdoor space, allowing for exhibitor demonstrations.

"Timber 2011 has generated a reputation as a premier event for equipment demonstrations for the forest products, biomass and land clearing industries," Oberheim said. "A show highlight is daily in-the-woods demonstrations of mechanized harvesters and forwarders in both hard and soft woods. The show also features a ride-and-drive area for log skidders and forwarders, grinder and chipper demos, and demonstrations of saws, firewood processors and other equipment in individual exhibitor spaces."

He added that Timber 2011 will host more than 65 exhibitors featuring the latest in machinery, equipment and technology, as well as financial and business services and assistance. Penn State's School of Forest Resources also will offer displays highlighting renewable natural resources-related degree programs, as well as research and extension programs focusing on alternative energy from wood and other renewable biomass sources.

Primary sponsors for Timber 2011 are Ag Choice Farm Credit, Foster F. Wineland Inc./John Deere and Taylor Machine Works Inc.

For information on Timber 2011, call (814) 863-2873 or visit the show website, at http://agsci.psu.edu/timber online.
 

Last Updated May 20, 2011