MFPC Newsletter October 2020

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178 candidates and members signed up

for MFPC’s virtual meetings

With roughly $1 billion dollars invested in Maine’s forest economy in the past few years, there’s a lot to talk about. So the Maine Forest Products Council (MFPC) invited all legislative candidates as well as MFPC members to register for one of the four MFPC online meetings — northern, southern, western and Down East — from Oct. 13-16. There were 178 registrations, although not everyone who signed up participated. That’s why we sent out a link to a recording of the presentation (above), so those who couldn’t attend a meeting still had an opportunity to catch up on where Maine’s forest products industry stands.
 
This is new presentation (not the same as the one from the annual meeting. It was designed for candidates by Executive Director Patrick Strauch. It was presented by our webinar hosts Alex Ingraham, Pingree Associates, northern Maine; Eric Kingsley, Innovative Natural Resource Solutions, southern Maine; Chris Fife, Weyerhaeuser, western Maine, and Peter Triandafillou, Huber Resources, Down East. They all did a great job and we appreciate their efforts and expertise.
 
Traditionally, the Maine Forest Products Council holds a series of regional breakfasts — and we provide the breakfast! — to give candidates and MFPC’s members a chance to get to know each other. In the COVID era, though, that tradition had to change, so we turned to ZOOM to bring everyone together. Candidates got a chance to hear about our industry, from the effects of COVID to the rapidly developing market for new forest-based products, and give a brief stump speech. The webinars also gave candidates and MFPC members a chance to ask questions and discuss issues.
 
A number of candidates and members also requested a copy of the PowerPoint slide that were presented. Since the PowerPoint is far too large to email, here’s a link to the pdf. MFPC webinar presentation – The State of Maine’s forest products industry
 
APPLY NOW: Economic recovery grant deadline extended
 
The deadline for applying for the second round Maine’s Economic Recovery grants has been extended to Thursday, Oct. 29 at 11:59 PM, according to Patty Cormier, Maine state forester.
 
“These grants are all through the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD),” Cormier said. “On the DECD website there are also two recorded webinars for folks with questions.”
 
Here is the link to the DECD page, with all the information: https://www.maine.gov/decd/economic-recovery-grants.
 
In Phase 1, Cormier said, there were more than 2,000 applications of which about two percent were forestry and agriculture businesses. In Phase 2, she added, the requirements “have been amended to better fit the forestry sector.”
 
Phase 2 will make available approximately $95 million in remaining funds from Phase 1 and expand access to the program by increasing the number of eligible businesses and non-profits. Under Phase 2, businesses and non-profits that employ up to 250 people will be eligible for grant rewards. Previously, small businesses and non-profits with up to 50 people were eligible. Additionally, licensed childcare and behavioral health organizations will be eligible in this round. The Department of Economic and Community Development estimates that nearly 3,000 more businesses and non-profit organizations will be eligible for grants as a result of the program’s expansion. 
 
If you have any questions not addressed in the DECD Program Description or Frequently Asked Questions please call 1-800-872-3838 and press 3, or email: BizAwards.DECD@maine.gov.
 
 
Why is ‘wood’ in thousands of everyday foods?
 
Is there sawdust in your parmesan cheese? Are there wood chips in your cereal box? Of course not! But clean, safe fibers derived from trees are in thousands of everyday foods, including vegan, organic and gluten free products.
 
When trees are broken down to a fine powder at a pulp mill, the cellulose molecule extracted from pulp is the same cellulose found in the plant cell walls of fruits and vegetables. It is one of the most common food additives and has been FDA-approved since the mid-1900s.
 
When used in food, tree cellulose is refined to become as pure as possible. Our bodies process high purity, food-grade cellulose like any other insoluble fiber: we don’t absorb or digest it, rather it passes through our body. Read more.
 
 
Celebrate Maine Forest Products Week Oct. 18-24!
 
National and Maine Forest Products Week is celebrated the third week in October every year. It’s a time to recognize the many products that come from our forests, the people who work in and manage our forest, the businesses that make the products and how each of these components contribute to our lives. Most Mainers know our forests are an essential part of the state’s history, environment and culture, but many people do not realize the economic contributions of our 17.6 million acres of trees or that forest products are a renewable and sustainable resource. Wood products are recyclable, durable and energy efficient. Forests also play a key role in absorbing carbon dioxide, releasing oxygen and storing carbon over time.
 
Watch the video below to learn about the importance of forests to climate change
 

 

Join the Maine Forest Service for a WoodsWise Lunch Oct. 22

Please join the Maine Forest Service (MFS) on October 22, noon to 1 p.m., for a virtual lunch hour discussion about Planning ahead to harvest timber on your woodlot, with MFS Foresters Morten Moesswilde and Andy Shultz. Our focus will be on steps that landowners should take before a harvest begins. We are also happy to answer other woods and forestry related questions. We ask that you send us your questions in advance, so we can research the answers.
 
To help protect the integrity of the session, a link and instructions on how to join the session will be provided to those who wish to attend. If you are interested in attending this session, please email forestinfo@maine.gov.
 
If you have any questions you would like answered during this session, please include them as well.

 

Register for Holt Research Forest Harvest Tour Nov. 7

As it prepares to begin the first timber harvest in over three decades at its Holt Research Forest, the Maine Timber Research & Environmental Education Foundation (Maine TREE) is announcing a guided, educational tour on Saturday, Nov. 7 at the Old Stage Road property in Arrowsic.  
 
Since it is the site of a long-term forest ecosystem study, Holt Research Forest is accessible to the public only through educational programming hosted by Maine TREE or its partners. The research at Holt is designed to assess the impacts of forest harvesting on the various ecosystem attributes monitored for the last 37 years at the property while demonstrating best forest management practices that are applicable to other small landowners in the state.
 
The tour will be co-led by consulting forester Barrie Brusila and University of Maine research scientist Jack Witham. They will provide context as to the findings on forest response to the harvest conducted in the late 1980s, as well as how the forest harvest recommendations were developed and the goals to be achieved in the harvest. Will Cole, a logger from Sidney, Maine, and owner of Trees, LTD, will be on-site to demonstrate the use of the equipment and answer questions about managing harvest operations.
 
Maine TREE requires pre-registration for this event and all participants must follow their COVID-19 policy for in-person events, designed to meet CDC guidelines. When registering, you can choose from multiple tour time options, each lasting two hours. Tour start times are 9 am, 11 am, and 1 pm if needed. Space is limited to 10 participants per tour. To find these details and to register online, please visit www.mainetree.org Read more.

 

Covid-19 federal and state resources and guidance

MFPC has created a page on our website to list forest products industry resources and guidance documents that we hope will prove useful to members and others. We will be updating it daily. If you see something online that would be helpful to others, please email it to Roberta Scruggs. Most recent posts:

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