The closing of Verso’s Bucksport mill brings concern for all members of Maine’s forest product community.
Three reasons to celebrate Maine’s forest economy
- Irving Forest Products held the grand opening of its new sawmill in Nashville Plantation. The investment of more than $30 million will lead to the creation of more than 60 new jobs.
- ReEnergy restarted its biomass plant in Ashland as part of National Bioenergy Day. The restart will restore 25 well-paying direct jobs and an estimated 150 indirect jobs in the region.
- Ecoshel’s Smart Shingle Production opened its facility in Ashland. When fully operational it’s is expected to employ about 80 people and lead to the creation of a significant number of indirect jobs throughout the region.
Are we out of the woods yet?
If you couldn’t make it to this year’s annual meeting (Sept. 7-8 in Bar Harbor), you missed “one of the best.” But not entirely. We can’t duplicate the fun and fellowship — or the challenging golf on one of the state’s toughest courses (Kebo Valley) — but we still want you to have all the valuable information that was provided.
So if you’re wondering what’s going to happen to wood markets, we’re providing three ways for you to catch up with the very educated insights of Paul Jannke of Forest Economic Advisors. His presentation contained a wealth of information that can help the forest products industry make key decisions over the next few years.
So we’ve provided three ways to get the most of it. A one-minute video of Jannke’s Take Home Points (above), for those who want to cut right to the chase,plus a condensed version of his presentation that covers the most important information; and all his graphs, charts and other information in his presentation. Read more.
Sean Ireland of Verso Paper explained how nanocellulose can and will provide new markets for forest products, including new composites that are “greener” than fiberglass and less expensive than carbon fiber. Researchers are even working on putting nanocellulose into cement. “Holy Toledo!” he said. “You can make concrete flex 30 percent and it gives you a 1000 percent increase in strength. Explain to me what that’s going to do to the world.” Read more.
We also found out the status of Maine’s spruce budworm strategy, as well asgot an update on what the budworm traps are telling us about the upcoming infestation. Read more.
Outstanding! MFPC honors the best of 2014
- Outstanding Manufacturer: Hardwood Products of Guilford
- Outstanding Logger: Richard Wing, Richard Wing & Sons Logging, Standish
- Outstanding Forester: Tricia Quinn of Plum Creek
- Outstanding Trucker: Jim Carrier, Richard Carrier Trucking, Skowhegan
- Alfred D. Nutting Award: Luke Brochu, Pleasant River Lumber. Read more.
- Abby Holman Public Service Award: Sen. Patrick Flood. Read more.
- President’s Award: Maine State Forester Doug Denico. Read more.
Austin Wilkins Award goes to Chadbourne Tree Farms
Governor Paul R. LePage presented Chadbourne Tree Farms, LLC with the prestigious 2014 Austin H. Wilkins Forest Stewardship Award at the Blaine House in Augusta. The prestigious award recognizes people or organizations that stand above their peers to further forestry, forests, or forestland conservation in the state of Maine. Read more.
Get a free breakfast and help our industry
The first candidate breakfast in Gray got MFPC off to a great start. About 30 people attended Oct. 1, about evenly split between candidates and folks from the forest products industry. Executive Director Patrick Strauch’s presentation not only was very informative, but sparked lively discussion about our issues, including what the industry needs to prosper.
“It was a great dialogue and illustrates how well the candidate breakfasts work,” Strauch said. “They give us a chance to help candidates understand our industry and they give MFPC members opportunities to talk about the issues that affect them.”
Plum Creek sponsored the breakfast in Gray and, as always, we very grateful to our sponsors, who provide this opportunity to reach both candidates and members. Read more.
- October 7, Old Town, Governor’s Restaurant, 7 – 9 a.m., sponsored by Katahdin Forest Management
- October 14, Farmington, Homestead Restaurant, 8 -10 a.m., co-sponsored by Wagner Forest Management and TRG/Stratton Lumber
- October 16, Sanford, Pleasant River Pine Mill, 7 -9 a.m. co-sponsored by Pleasant River and Farm Credit East
- October 23, Fort Kent, Swamp Buck Restaurant, 7 – 9 a.m., co-sponsored by Key Bank of ME and J.D. Irving.
Or just email Sue McCarthy to reserve your breakfast.
Michaud and Cutler
on natural resources
There’s no time like the present to ask the gubernatorial candidates how they feel about Maine’s natural resources, so that’s just what the Natural Resource Network did. Candidates Mike Michaud and Eliot Cutler held wide-ranging discussions with NRN members on Sept. 26 at the Maine Farm Bureau in Augusta. Gov. Paul LePage had a scheduling conflict, but is working with the NRN to find a time to meet. “Eliot Cutler and Mike Michaud both provided the group with some insight on how they would focus their administration on natural resources,” said MFPC Executive Director Patrick Strauch. Read more.
A lesson from superstar Dave Cowens
about getting it backwards
It’s not easy to work Celtics great Dave Cowens, the “greatest game ever played,” and a lifetime of person-to-person research into the MFPC newsletter, but Communications Director Roberta Scruggs has found a way. Using her experience as a reporter, editor and sportswriter she writes about her personal “Three Laws of Communications” and how they’re working for MFPC. In fact, they could work for any organization. Words can be incredibly powerful, as Cowens’ were for Scruggs, but they also can fall on deaf ears. Read more.
‘Can sawdust and shavings be re-used?’
Here’s the issue: I have become aware of several small wood working shops, just in the South Portland area alone, who would love to find a beneficial re-use of the sawdust and wood shavings that they generate in their shops. I’ve talked to people who are small scale hobbyists, a high school wood shop class, and small mill works and retail wood working shops who all would like to find a way to dispose of this byproduct rather than sending it to the incinerator or land fill. All are small scale producers of the product, and perhaps even combined it would not be enough to go to a pellet or brick maker, for example. But if enough suppliers could work together on a regional basis, maybe something could happen. I would love to find a way to help these suppliers broker their product. They are not looking to make a profit, just find a beneficial re-use for their sawdust and shavings. If you have any information or suggestions, please email me.
Since 1961, the Maine Forest Products Council has been the voice of Maine’s forest economy. The MFPC represents the diverse needs of Maine’s forest products community. Our members are landowners, loggers, truckers, paper mills, tree farmers, foresters and lumber processors, but they are also bankers, lawyers and insurance executives. We feel we represent anyone who has an interest in seeing the Maine woods remain a viable, sustainable resource. We serve our community by gathering information, bringing groups together to discuss concerns, hosting events, conducting tours and helping people find common ground. We represent our members at the Maine Legislature, but also across the state, in Washington D.C. and across the nation.
Patrick Strauch, Executive Director;
Pat Sirois, SFI Coordinator
Roberta Scruggs, Communications Director
Sue McCarthy, Office Manager
Address: 535 Civic Center Dr., Augusta ME 04330
Phone: 207-622-9288 Website: www.maineforest.org