Eight wood buyers from four foreign countries will visit 11 manufacturers of forestry products
Eight wood buyers from outside the United States this week will visit 11 different manufacturers of forestry products during a six-day trip to the state from May 29-June 3. The inbound wood-buying mission is being hosted by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) and New North Inc., the economic-development corporation serving the 18 counties of Northeast Wisconsin, and is sponsored by the Wisconsin Initiative for Agricultural Exports.
The 2023 Forest Products Buyers’ Mission includes representatives of firms from Mexico, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. The 11 producers of lumber and hardwoods to be visited are spread across the entirety of Wisconsin, from the south-central portion of the state, to Northeast Wisconsin (the New North region), to the far northwest section (see attached map for specific locations of planned stops).
“Forestry products are an important component of both our state and regional economies,” says Barb LaMue, president and CEO of New North Inc. “We are pleased to partner with DATCP for the second year in a row to show off the hardwood-production capabilities of our companies as part of the Global New North initiative. Expansion of available markets to sell in has the potential to offer tremendous growth opportunity for these wood producers.”
The sojourn within the New North region will take place on May 31 and June 1, including four stops the first day. The day begins at Krueger Lumber Company in Valders (www.kruegerlumber.com), followed by a visit to Lakeshore Forest Products in Francis Creek (www.lakeshoreforestlumber.com).
The day continues with the wood buyers touring Tigerton Lumber Company in Tigerton (www.tigertonlumber.com), and concludes with a visit to Kersten Lumber Company in Birnamwood (www.kerstenlumberco.com).
On June 1, the New North region portion of the wood buyers’ visit will wrap up with a morning tour of the Menominee Tribal Enterprises Forestry Center and Sawmill in Keshena, Wis. (www.mtewood.com). Menominee Tribal Enterprises (MTE) hosted nine wood buyers from Pakistan in June 2022 as part of a similar tour arranged by New North Inc. and DATCP.
“As a result of last year’s visit by the Pakistan wood-buyers delegation, MTE is committed to continue building international contacts,” says Jason Swartz, sales manager for Menominee Tribal Enterprises. “By doing so, we can grow our export business and develop a more diversified customer base.”
Each stop of the mission trip will allow the wood buyers to learn about available wood products through a presentation, along with a tour of its facility to see operations. The New North team will participate, sharing other resources and explaining the benefits of making an investment in Northeast Wisconsin.
New North, Inc., is a 501(c)3 non-profit, regional economic development corporation fostering collaboration among private and public sector leaders throughout the 18 counties of Northeast Wisconsin, known as the New North region. The New North brand unites the region both internally and externally around talent development, brand promotion and business development, signifying the collective economic power behind the 18 counties. The counties include Outagamie, Winnebago, Calumet, Waupaca, Brown, Shawano, Oconto, Marinette, Door, Kewaunee, Sheboygan, Manitowoc, Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Marquette, Florence, Menominee and Waushara. www.thenewnorth.com