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We are always told to “buy local and support your community,” but it is often easier said than done. These days, when buying products you would naturally think originate close to home, they turn out to be imported from some country thousands of miles away, and local resources are being shipped out and difficult to obtain.

This is especially true of Montana forest products which are shipped all over the country and the world. When you go to a big box hardware store to buy lumber, you are not always buying Montana wood and supporting your local community.

Why is it important to buy Montana Forest Products?

Buying Montana forest products supports local businesses, strengthens our state’s economy, and contributes to the health of our forests.

Timber harvesting is a vital tool for forest management and, when applied strategically and sustainably, can contribute to the health and safety of our forests, communities, and environment.

Through strategic, sustainable timber harvesting, we can:

  • Maintain healthy, sustainable forests. o By removing dead and diseased trees, we can stop the spread of damaging bacteria, fungi, and insect infestations. o Strategic removal of select trees also relieves excessive growth and overcrowding, providing a better environment for growing healthy trees and plants.

  • Decrease forest fires risk o By thinning overgrown forests and removing dead and fallen trees, fuel for wildfires is reduced. Also, timber harvesting can provide forest access, fuel breaks, and other strategies to help firefighters battle wildfires and protect our communities.

  • Aid in the fight against climate change. o Substantial research is underway examining forest health, carbon emissions, and forest management. Dying trees, other vegetation, and wildfires emit a tremendous amount of carbon and other greenhouse gases. Growing trees and plants are carbon sequesters, meaning they remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. There is increasing evidence that carbon emissions can be reduced through forest management practices that sustain healthy, growing forests.

Montana timber harvesters are dedicated stewards of the state’s forests and are committed to responsible forest management practices to ensure generations of healthy forests for future Montanans.

Where can I find Montana renewable wood products?

The Montana Wood Products Directory allows you to search for local businesses that offer building materials, interior products such as flooring and furniture, outdoor living and landscaping products, fuelwood, woodcraft products, and more.

The Montana Wood Products Directory is a collaboration between the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, the Montana Manufacturers Information System maintained by the University of Montana, and the UM Bureau of Business and Economic Research.

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