NC State Extension Publications

 

  • North Carolina has about 18.1 million acres of timberland covering about 58 percent of the state’s total land area.
  • In 2018, the forest sector in North Carolina—including forestry and logging operations, sawmills, furniture mills, and pulp and paper industries—directly contributed $20.8 billion in industry output, which was just about 2 percent of the statewide economic output. The forest sector employed about 75,000 people with a payroll of $4.2 billion and a value added (gross state product) of $6.3 billion.
  • Including direct, indirect, and induced effects, the forest sector in North Carolina had a total contribution of $33.6 billion in industry output to the North Carolina economy, supporting more than 150,400 full-time and part-time jobs with a payroll of about $8.3 billion.
  • Compared to 2017, total economic output in 2018 was up 2.6 percent, but total employment dropped slightly less than 0.4 percent. While forestry operations gained about 400 jobs, primary solid wood mills and paper and paperboard mills lost about 5,300 jobs collectively.
  • The forest sector was the top employer among manufacturing sectors in the state.
  • Every job created in the forest sector resulted in another 1.01 jobs in North Carolina.
  • On average, every dollar generated in the forest sector contributed an additional 61 cents to the rest of the North Carolina economy.
  • The forest sector in North Carolina directly generated about $274.2 million in state and local taxes and $850.4 million in federal taxes. Compared to 2017, both state and local taxes and federal taxes increased by 6.1 percent and 0.2 percent, respectively.
  • Primary solid wood mills directly generated about $35.7 million in state and local taxes and more than $100 million in federal taxes. Compared to 2017, both state and local taxes and federal taxes from the primary solid wood industry decreased by 12 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively.
  • International exports from the North Carolina forest sector totaled about $1.44 billion.

 


Table 1. Economic contribution of the North Carolina forest sector, 20181.
Employment2
(jobs)
Labor Income3
(million $)
Gross State Product4
(million $)
Industry Output5
(million $)

Direct Contribution6

Forestry operations

704

37.61 41.43 54.30

Logging

6,171 258.16 272.02 478.76

Primary solid wood mills7

8,267

473.27 918.09 2,885.53

Secondary solid wood mills8

42,806

2,092.32 2,845.49 8,070.47

Primary paper and paperboard mills

3,977 411.50 777.37 3,106.87

Secondary paper and paperboard mills

13,051 949.44 1,471.89 6,236.39

Total

74,975 4,222.31 6,326.28 20,832.33

Total Contribution9

Forestry operations

926

47.89

60.12 87.07

Logging

8,271 360.74 452.55 798.43

Primary solid wood mills

17,395 967.26 1,761.95 4,462.81

Secondary solid wood mills

77,332 3,951.29 5,911.68 13,775.83

Primary paper and paperboard mills

14,664 1,004.01 1,797.00 5,030.23

Secondary paper and paperboard mills

31,829 1,948.47 3,184.15 9,444.15

Total

150,417 8,280 13,167 33,599

Change in Total Contribution from 2017

Forestry operations

77.1%

96.6% 10.0% 22.5%

Logging

1.9% -0.8% -1.2% 12.4%

Primary solid wood mills

-10.2% -9.5% 3.1% -3.7%

Secondary solid wood mills

5.7% 8.7% 10.5% 7.6%

Primary paper and paperboard mills

-11.1% -7.1% -4.1% -3.4%

Secondary paper and paperboard mills

-4.5% -2.9% -3.5% 1.2%

Total

-0.4% 1.2% 3.3% 2.6%

1 Economic contribution numbers, based on multi-industry contribution analysis, are reported in 2018 dollars. The method of internal adjustments to the IMPLAN software (IMPLAN 2018) was used. More details about the contribution analysis method can be found at https://bit.ly/2LajYIL. IMPLAN sectors included 15, 16, 19 (partial), 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 142, 143, 144, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151, 365, 366, 367, 370, 371, and 373.
2 Employment includes both full-time and part-time jobs.
3 Labor income includes all forms of employment income, including employee compensation (wages and benefits) and proprietor income.
4 Gross State Product (value added) is the difference between industry output and the cost of intermediate inputs. It consists of compensation of employees, taxes on production and imports less subsidies, and gross operating surplus.
5 Industry output is the total annual value of production by industry.
6 Direct contribution is a series of production changes or expenditures made by producers and consumers as a result of an activity.
7 Primary mills, such as sawmills and pulp mills, consume wood in a round or log form before producing a value added product.
8 Secondary mills, such as furniture and paper mills, use wood-based products to produce value added products.
9 Total contribution is the sum of direct, indirect, and induced contribution effects generated by the sector.

Authors

Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist, Forest Economics
Forestry & Environmental Resources
Associate Dean of Extension, Department Extension Leader & Professor
Forestry & Environmental Resources

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Publication date: May 27, 2020
AG-844

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