Wood prices flat in end of year 2020 harvest reports

Harvest volumes jumped in public sales, but prices stayed steady at end of volatile year

MADISON, Wis. -- Harvest volumes for a variety of public landowners showed strong increases in Wisconsin in the 4th Quarter of 2020, but the heightened demand led to few statewide increases in index prices for different species of sawlogs and cordwood.

Aspen pulpwood volume among those owners increased by the greatest percentage of any species, but that robust demand compared to 2019 led to only a 1% increase in the Forest Data Network index prices.

Sawlog prices were fairly stable across the state with prior years except for index prices for ash, aspen and mixed hardwoods. Meanwhile prices for some specialty woods, including cedar and tamarack reached 4-year highs.

For specific information on prices for 16 species and more subspecies in 13 regions throughout Wisconsin, check here.

Statewide demand for aspen, maple, mixed hardwood and oak sawlogs all grew by double digits compared with harvest volumes recorded in the 4th quarter of 2019.

In cordwood, tamarack also recorded a large increase as did fuelwood, which hit a 5-year high in the 4th quarter.

Subspecies prices tended to vary dramatically between regions in the state. For instance, the sugar maple index price in the Northern Lakes region maintained a recent strong trend being more than 70% higher than in the Mississippi River area.

Red oak prices decreased across all of the regions (in some by as much as $100/mbf). White oak prices were more stable, but did vary among the regions of the state. The Fox Valley and Chippewa regions showed particularly strong prices, while the Northern Lakes area prices remained very low.

Subscribe to Forest Data Network prices for your region based on transactions from a wide range of harvests here.

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