2018 Blogging Logging – Timber Sale Distance, Fuel, and Trucking (week 6)

Transportation and how it is accomplished are important concerns for logging businesses. It is expensive to move logging equipment to the job site and to transport logs and other products to mills. Except for the smallest logging businesses, timber sale sites are typically located 31-60 miles away from the primary business location in Wisconsin. Interestingly, as the annual harvest category increases, average one-way distance becomes more varied with a small number of businesses reporting one-way distances over 91 miles. Also notable is that roughly 80% of the largest businesses have distances in the 31-60 mile category and these businesses show no reported sales over 91 miles.

Not surprisingly, those who harvested more timber in 2016 used more fuel for off-road activities (harvesting, on-site processing, and primary transport). Median overall fuel usage was 4,518 gallons. However, the range was from 500 to 30,000 gallons.

Over 70% of logging businesses contract the hauling of wood products to mills. The general trend is for smaller logging businesses to be more reliant on contract hauling, but in general the portion is above 60%. The exceptions are businesses that harvested 10,001-15,000 cords, for which only 47% was hauled by contractors. This is a second example where this category breaks with trends in the data (see week 5 access to capital). As subsequent analyses unfold, we’ll need to pay attention to the category.

Author: Mark Rickenbach

Links to complete series on Week 1 post.

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