UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Forest-products business professionals, students and workers interested in forest-related careers, and vendors of equipment and supplies will gather for commerce, education and networking at the 2021 Forest Products Equipment and Technology Exposition, Friday, June 4, and Saturday, June 5, at Penn State’s Ag Progress Days site at Rock Springs.
Organizers of the event will follow all pertinent state regulations, local ordinances and Penn State guidelines pertaining to COVID-19. Attendees are required to wear facial coverings both indoors and outdoors and must follow physical distancing guidelines for the safety of all participants, according to show manager Jesse Darlington, of Penn State.
“With the end of the COVID-19 pandemic perhaps in sight and the economy poised for a rebound, we’re pleased that we will be able to host visitors on-site at the expo — a large portion of which is outdoors — in a safe manner as the industry strives to emerge from the pandemic as strong as ever,” he said.
Known as Timber 2021, the biennial trade exposition is aimed primarily at loggers, sawmill operators, value-added processors and forest landowners. The event is hosted by the Department of Ecosystem Science and Management in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences and the Pennsylvania Forest Products Association. Parking and admission are free.
The leading hardwood-producing state in the nation, Pennsylvania is home to more than 2,100 forest-products companies and 750,000 forest landowners. About 64,000 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 has an approximately $36 billion a year impact on the state’s economy.
Timber 2021 is expected to attract dozens of commercial exhibitors and vendors serving the forest-products industry and emerging biomass markets. Owners and employees of forest-products companies can learn about new technology and best practices, Darlington said.
“Visitors can see the latest equipment on display and in action at live demonstrations, including wheeled loaders, horizontal grinders, chippers and other machinery,” he said.
Matt Gabler, Pennsylvania Forest Products Association executive director, pointed out that the expo also provides valuable professional development for industry personnel.
“With new technology, ever-changing regulations and shifting markets, companies need every edge they can find, especially after a year like the last one,” he said. “The networking and continuing education opportunities available at Timber 2021 can help employees and owners gain the knowledge they need to remain competitive.”
Gabler noted that a Pennsylvania Sustainable Forestry Initiative training course during Timber 2021 will enable loggers to meet their annual PA SFI continuing education requirements. The course is free to attend, with a nominal administrative fee charged to those who wish to register for continuing education credit.
New to this year’s timber show is the Timber Strong Career and Employment Expo, which will provide a venue for companies to recruit prospective employees and for attendees to discuss jobs and career opportunities with exhibitors.
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 2021 include Forest Products Credit by AgChoice Farm Credit, Kline’s Equipment & Mill Supplies Inc., Foster F. Wineland Inc., Taylor Machine Works Inc. and Cleveland Brothers CAT.
More information about Timber 2021, including details on exhibiting and sponsorship opportunities, is available by calling 814-863-2873 or by visiting the show website at https://agsci.psu.edu/timber.
Twitter users can find and share information about the event by using the hashtag #PaTimberShow.
–Chuck Gill, Penn State University