Mendocino County, California, reports 5.2% year-over-year drop in log output in 2011 while costs of harvesting and transporting timber to mills rose 16.7% on higher fuel prices, loss of milling infrastructure requiring longer hauls

LOS ANGELES , August 15, 2012 () –

Last year’s log production in Mendocino County, California, declined while costs to harvest and transport timber to mills increased significantly, according to the county's 2011 crop report, reported The Willits News on Aug. 15.

Mendocino County ranked fourth among all counties in California in terms of 2011 lumber production, although its share of total state lumber output fell to 7% last year from 8% in 2010.

Log output in the county last year declined to 89.8 million board feet (mmbf) from 94.7 mmbf in 2010. This 5.2% decrease was relatively insignificant, said Agricultural Commissioner Chuck Morse, The Willits News reported.

The worst year since the county’s Dept. of Agricultural began keeping records in 1965 was 2009, when timber production was just 43.8 mmbf. The best year on record was in 2005, when output reached 120.8 mmbf.

Higher production costs raised the county’s gross mill value of timber in 2011 to US$59.08 million versus $57.07 million in 2010. On the upside, timber was Mendocino County’s second most valuable crop last year; grapes were No. 1, reported The Willits News.

Logging and hauling costs in 2011 increased year-over-year by 16.7% to $350 per 1,000 board feet. In 2010, the cost was $300/mbf.

The jump in logging expenses was due to “inflationary impacts of fuel and loss of milling infrastructure requiring longer haul distances, ” said Morse, The Willits News reported

The primary source of this article is The Willits News, Willits, California, on Aug. 15, 2012.

 

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