Timber Products and Hardwood Flooring Made in Virginia
12th April 2017
The State of Virginia has been home to a thriving timber and wood products industry ever since the early 1600ís when Captain John Smith set foot on her shores. From the earliest days, Virginia timber was harvested, milled, and returned for sale in England for posts, beams, and hardwood flooring while also providing material for local buildings.
Even today, the timber industry is a vital part of the Virginia economy and way of life with forest products accounting for a large share of Virginiaís economic base and a large amount of area within the Commonwealth. Virginia comprises an area of 25.4 million acres, and over 15 million of those acres, or 60 percent, are commercially productive forest lands.
Here at Accent on Floors in Hopewell, we are proud to feature wood flooring products harvested and manufactured in Virginia, contributing to the support and continuation of this important industry in our State.
Wood Products Made in Virginia
All of Virginiaís 95 counties report some amount of commercial forest industry and products within their borders. In total, the harvesting, production, and sale of timber products in the State adds about $23 billion dollars each year to the economy. Forest product manufacturers account for more than one quarter of all industrial businesses in Virginia, employing hundreds of thousands of people, according to a report recently published by the Virginia Department of Forestry.
The largest number of forestry related businesses are the 170 furniture plants, followed by 160 sawmills, and 100 paper product manufacturers. Millwork plants and factories manufacturing transportation pallets each have 55 current operations in the State. There are an additional 45 other timber and wood product industries currently in production in Virginia, according to the same report.
Unlike the large-scale timber industry in the Western U.S. which mostly harvests softer-woods like pine and fir, Virginia is rich in hardwood forests. Of all forests in the State, 79 percent are hardwoods including oak, hickory, maple, and birch, and only 21 percent are soft woods like pine. Hardwoods are the strongest, most durable, and most attractive woods for solid hardwood flooring, furniture making, and decorative veneers used for paneling and engineered flooring.
Some Virginia hardwoods are transformed at local mills producing beautiful and durable solid hardwood flooring planks available at Accent on Floors.
Reforestation and Recycling in Virginia Timber Industry
Over 66 percent of Virginiaís commercial forest lands are owned by private landowners. State and Federal governments own the balance, but all stakeholders have an interest in active reforestation programs for the continuation of the industry and the preservation of the other opportunities offered by healthy forests, including recreation, hunting and fishing, and scenic values.
Virginia began a large reforestation program in the 1970s, sharing the costs with private landowners for planting new trees in areas harvested for timber. Over 250,000,000 trees have been planted since the inception of the program, giving Virginia one of the largest inventories of commercial hardwood forests in the United States.
Timber industries produce by-products which manufactures have found ways of reusing within the industry itself. For example, sawmills produce large amounts of sawdust along with chunks of bark and chips from milling. These products are often further processed to produce nursery and livestock bedding products or passed on to paper pulp manufacturers.
Sawdust and chips can also be burned on-site in high efficiency boilers, producing electricity for operating the sawmill. Some mills produce enough energy from burning sawdust that they have some left over to sell to the power company, increasing their income. By recycling its own waste products to produce energy, Virginia timber industry plants save the burning of about two million barrels of fossil fuel oil each year.
Virginia Sourced Hardwood Flooring
Made in Virginia, Traditions Solid Wood Flooring with aluminum oxide finish is a flooring brand available at Accent on Floors. Aluminum oxide is a finishing treatment which makes the surface of the floor especially resistant to dents, dings, and scratches and prevents the need for regular waxing.
Our wide selection of hardwood flooring, including woods harvested and milled in the State of Virginia, are available for viewing at our showroom in Hopewell. You can also contact us and tell us about your flooring needs and we can schedule an on-site consultation with one of our mobile flooring specialists through our Shop@Home program serving Hopewell, Chester, Colonial Heights, Petersburg, Prince George, and surrounding areas.