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U.S. China Trade Dispute Heats Up - May 10, 2019 
The Trump administration has confirmed that existing tariffs will jump from 10% to 25%. China indicated later this week that it will respond with tariff increases of its own. These are expected to impact U.S. hardwood exports, which could further depress demand and cause economic hardships for the U.S. hardwood sector.; Forest Product Association Seeks New Truck Weight Limits: AFPA contends that its proposal is safer than what is currently on interstates while taking into account growing truck traffic and industry needs.; Keep Employees Safe When They Must Work in Hot Conditions: Thousands of workers in the U.S. die or become ill from working in extreme heat or humid conditions each year.; News Briefs: The U.S. Forest Service is proceeding with its plans to sell 225 million board feet of old growth timber in the Tongass National Forest in Alaska. The American Forest & Paper Association (AFPA) issued a press release on Earth Day. more...
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Progress in the Works for China Trade Issue, Fate of USMCA Uncertain - May 3, 2019 
The Hardwood Federation has confirmed that hardwood and wood products continue to be included in the agriculture discussions, although details remain fluid.; U.S. Forests Are Healthy But at Risk to Wildfires, Harvesting Takes Place on Only 2% of Available Land: According a the report, the industry accounts for approximately 4% of the nation’s total manufacturing GDP, producing over $200 billion in products every year.; News Briefs: Pending sales of previously owned U.S. homes jumped by 3.8% in March. More than 80 commercial exhibitors are expected to participate in the Forest Product Equipment and Technology Exposition on June 7 and 8. more...
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Brambles Touts Sustainability Track Record, Recognized as Corporate Leader - Apr 30, 2019 
The good news is that pallet recycling and reuse is a good story to tell. Brambles, the parent company behind CHEP, has taken this initiative to a whole new level. The company was recently named the second most sustainable company in the world by Barrons magazine.; Recycle Bits: A recent six-alarm fire at a pallet and lumber business in Stockton, California is under investigation. The demand for trucking services, softened the first quarter of 2019. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is currently working on a rulemaking that may define biomass as carbon neutral. more...
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Canada to Appeal WTO Softwood Ruling - Apr 26, 2019 
The WTO has ruled more than 20 times that zeroing, a method of calculating and applying artificially high and unfair duty rates, is inconsistent with WTO rules.; Self-Driving Trucks: Fact vs. Fiction: self-driving trucks are here to stay. But what kind of impact will they have on the trucking industry in the near future?; News Briefs: In the first quarter of 2019, softwood grade lumber prices in North America have continued to drop at a much faster rate than log prices. A recent six-alarm fire at a pallet and lumber business in Stockton, California is under investigation. The demand for trucking services, which was historically high in 2018, softened the first quarter of 2019. more...
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Brambles Releases Third Quarter Update, CHEP Americas Revenues Increase - Apr 19, 2019 
CHEP has been successful pushing through price increases to offset higher production and lumber costs. In Europe, sales revenue grew by 8% led by net new business wins and price increases across the region.: New Alcohol and Drug Database May Worsen Truck Driver Shortage: The shortage is expected to worsen in the beginning in January 2020, but further down the road, some other changes are in the works that could potentially ease the shortage.; News Briefs: Georgia-Pacific has announced that it will close its Coos Bay lumber mill in Oregon and lay off all 111 workers. more...
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WTO Panel Issues Decision in Softwood Lumber Dispute Methodology - Apr 12, 2019 
The WTO dispute settlement panel issued a split decision, but the biggest win went to the United States, as the panel upheld the use of a controversial anti-dumping calculation method called “zeroing."; Debate Continues in Washington as Some States and D.C. Raise Their Base Wages: The legislation, if passed, would gradually raise the federal minimum hourly wage from $7.25 to $15 through 2024, and the bill would also do away with special “sub-minimum” pay.; News Briefs: A Guinness World Record for pallet dominoes was set last week in Yakima, Washington. British Columbia’s Forests Minister Doug Donaldson has announced an investment of $7.9 million by B.C. and the federal government in Canada. East Texas is now being called the nation’s “wood basket,” because of the abundance of tall southern yellow pine planted on private land. more...
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State of the Pallet Industry – Part 3: U.S. Economy Slowing, But Still Pretty Good - Apr 5, 2019 
Forecasts from leading economic experts are a big hit at industry events. One of the top voices on the U.S. manufacturing sector spoke at the recent National Wooden Pallet & Container Association annual meeting. He delivered a mixed bag of both good news and some warning signs to monitor.; Seeking A Better Market for Residuals: Researchers are working on finding ways to put wood in everything from computer chips to concrete to diapers. The problem is that many of these potential markets are years from the full commercialization stage.; Quarterly Graph Update: Profile regional lumber trends track hardwood cants over the past year. more...
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OSHA Citation Highlights Wood Dust Concern for Recyclers - Mar 29, 2019 
Why would OSHA target a company that isn’t a high danger target and one that goes above and beyond the standard in the industry? I will leave others to speculate on that question.; Trade Groups Launch Global Wood Packaging Forum Initiative and Website: Professionals will be able to access numerous research studies, articles, web sites and other tools addressing frequently requested topics related to wood packaging with ease and convenience. more...
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Filling the Leadership Vacuum - State of the Pallet Industry – Part 2 - Mar 29, 2019 
As the pallet business becomes more complex, you need people who can troubleshoot a lot of scenarios and even interact with customers.; January 2019 Housing Report Shows Tepid Housing Construction and Sales: Most problematic was the continued decline in single-family permits, as well as construction spending – total and single-family.; NEWS BRIEFS: A federal appeals court blocked a logging project in western Montana while it considers a lawsuit that claims the project could harm threatened species. more...
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State of the Pallet Industry – Part 1, Trucking Trends for the Future – Will the Trucking Picture Improve? - Mar 22, 2019 
The big blessing is that trucking capacity is starting to ease although this trend is not universal. Capacity is complicated… It’s not just supply and demand any more. It really depends on what you are shipping and where you are sending it.; Trade Groups Launch Global Wood Packaging Forum Initiative and Website: The Global Wood Packaging Forum website offers information and helpful tools for wood packaging professionals and their customers worldwide.; News Briefs: The Softwood Lumber Board (SLB) is seeking nomination for open seats. New research suggests climate change makes it increasingly difficult for tree seedlings to regenerate following wildfires in low-elevation forests. more...
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