SLMA and SFPA Spring Meeting Strongly Attended

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New Orleans, LA–The Southeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association (SLMA) and Southern Forest Products Association (SFPA) hosted a joint, two-day meeting here recently.

The associations held their respective board meetings, in addition to providing attendees with industry updates from various experts and hosting a trade expo featuring more than 40 vendors that supply equipment and services to the lumber industry. Before the official meeting began, a fundraising dinner to provide funds to update the industry catalog of high resolution Southern Yellow Pine product photos was held at the renown Napoleon House.

Eric Gee, SFPA Executive Director, provided an overview of SFPA’s recent programs and activities. SFPA currently promotes Southern Pine lumber in nine global markets with in-market representatives based in five countries.

After two years of hosting virtual events and meetings, SFPA is pleased to be offering in-person activities once again, with increased funding for International Program promotions, additional technical resources, the newly rebranded John Edgar Rhodes Sawmill Safety Excellence Award, and the annual Forest Products EXPO, which will be held in Nashville, Tennessee on August 23-25, 2023.

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SLMA’s board meeting highlighted on-going efforts of the association regarding government affairs activities in Washington, DC to promote lumber as a “green” building material that supports rural economies while also combating potentially troublesome regulations and tax changes. The membership was also informed about the association’s growing Young Lumber Professionals and Fundamentals of Leadership programs, which help develop future industry leaders, and SLMA’s Lumber.Works website to provide materials and virtual reality videos to members that are recruiting potential employees at high schools, trade schools, and job fairs.

The Industry Updates sessions included presentations by experts ranging from environmental, tax, and human resource attorneys to representatives from the treated wood, trucking, and pallet industries. Attendees were also informed of changes to insurance coverage for sawmills and updated on Southern Yellow Pine exports.

In total, more than 200 registrants participated at the recent meeting. SLMA’s next meeting, the 2022 SLMA Annual Conference, is scheduled for July 20-23, 2022, at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, CO.

By Terry Miller

Editor, Marketing Consultant, and Third generation publisher. With Miller Wood Trade Publications since 1983.

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