Pennsylvania's forest-products industry the focus of Timber 2017 expo

May 18, 2017

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Businesses and individuals interested in Pennsylvania's large forest-products industry can learn about goods, services, best practices and industry trends at the 2017 Forest Products Equipment and Technology Exposition, which will take place Friday, June 9, and Saturday, June 10, at Penn State's Ag Progress Days site at Rock Springs.

Known as Timber 2017, the biennial trade exposition is aimed primarily at loggers, sawmill operators, value-added processors and forest landowners. The event is hosted by the Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences and the Pennsylvania Forest Products Association. Parking and admission are free.

Organizers expect the event to attract more than 80 commercial exhibitors and vendors serving the forest-products industry and emerging biomass markets.

The leading hardwood-producing state in the nation, Pennsylvania is home to more than 2,100 forest-products companies and 500,000 forest landowners. More than 80,000 Pennsylvanians work in the forest-products industry, accounting for about one of every nine manufacturing jobs in the state. The industry generates nearly $12 billion in annual sales and contributes about $19 billion a year to the state's economy.

Timber 2017 offers owners and employees of forest-products companies a chance to stay abreast of new technology, according to show manager Jesse Darlington, of Penn State.

"The Ag Progress Days site features expansive outdoor space for displays and demonstrations of harvesting and sawmill machinery," he said. "Visitors can see the latest technology in action at our in-the-woods demonstrations and can test-drive selected equipment at a ride-and-drive area."

Darlington said on-site and in-the-woods demonstrations will feature a range of forest-product technologies and equipment, including feller bunchers with processing heads, wheel loaders, log skidders, horizontal grinders and chippers.

Paul Lyskava, Pennsylvania Forest Products Association executive director, noted that the expo also provides valuable professional development for industry personnel.

"Successful businesses are the ones that stay current with evolving technology, regulations and best practices," he said. "The networking and continuing education available at Timber 2017 can help employees to advance their skills and companies to enhance their profitability."

Lyskava said a Pennsylvania Sustainable Forestry Initiative training course scheduled on both days of the show will enable loggers to meet their annual PA SFI continuing-education requirements. The course is free to attend, with a $20 administrative fee charged to those who wish to register for continuing-education credit.

Other planned Timber 2017 activities include the following:

— Penn State Woodsmen's Team demonstrations. Team members, who travel to compete in various regional and national collegiate events, will demonstrate skills such as axe-throwing, underhand chopping and crosscutting on both days of the expo.

— Game of Logging national finals. A competition based on a world-recognized chain saw skills curriculum, this contest — which includes landowner and professional logger divisions — combines Scandinavian logging techniques with the latest systems for working safely around trees. Qualifiers from state-level competitions will compete in categories such as Bore Station, Spring Pole, Big Stump, Precision Stump, Speed Cut and Tree Felling.

Jim Finley woodlot tour

Penn State forestry experts will discuss forest management during woodlot tours at Timber 2017.

IMAGE: Penn State

— Woodlot management tours offered by Penn State forestry experts on both days will examine two types of sustainable harvesting practices: forest stand thinning and the shelterwood regeneration method. The 60-minute tours will allow participants to see examples of each type of harvest, both of which will be contrasted with the more commonly practiced "selective" cutting.

— Penn State's Pasto Agricultural Museum will present displays and hands-on exhibits focusing on timber and logging history. The "Axe Whisperer," Jim Walizer, will share his passion for the history of timber, logging and forestry in presentations twice each day. Exhibits and demonstrations also will highlight charcoal's role in the history of the region's early iron-making industry.

— "Log-a-Load for Kids" Truck Parade. The forest-product industry's charitable efforts will be highlighted by a procession of vehicles that will begin at the Snider Ag Arena on the University Park campus, proceed through downtown State College, and continue to Main Street on the show grounds. The event will culminate with a check presentation to the Children's Miracle Network. Nationally, the annual "Log a Load for Kids" campaign, during which individuals and businesses in the logging and forestry industries donate the value of a load of logs, has raised about $20 million to help sick and injured children.

The Ag Progress Days site — at Penn State's Russell E. Larson Agricultural Research Center — is nine miles southwest of State College on state Route 45.

Primary sponsors for Timber 2017 include Forest Products Credit by AgChoice FC, Foster F. Wineland Inc., Pendu Manufacturing Inc. and Taylor Machine Works Inc.

More information about Timber 2017, including details on exhibiting and sponsorship opportunities, is available by calling 814-863-2873 or by visiting the show website.

Twitter users can find and share information about the event by using the hashtag #PaTimberShow.

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated June 20, 2017