The Alabama electric cooperative is working on creating opportunities in the state forestry industry.
Representatives from nine Wiregrass counties have been brainstorming in Andalusia on ways to create job opportunities in timber.
It seems that there's more lumber in south and central Alabama than just about anywhere else in the continental United States.
Nisa Miranda with the University of Alabama’s center for economic development says the timber industry's future is sky high. Miranda gave research data to a group of representatives from nine wiregrass counties:
"The state is extremely forested. Alabama is the second most forested state in the country. And we have managed our lands very well," said Miranda.
Earlier this year, Ameridoor Corporation re-located from Ft. Walton beach to Andalusia. The company manufactures custom cabinet doors which are shipped nationwide. Ameridoor representatives say the move to Alabama has been outstanding.
President of Ameridoor Inc, Tammy Maddox said "Select the best grade of wood. Ours is a top end cabinet for individuals. So it really makes a big difference to go and select the lumber"
Alabama electric cooperative serves more than one-dozen counties in the wiregrass and northwest, Florida. They say it’s important to get companies interested in thinking lumber.
"Lumber is vital to our service area. And the timber industry is one of the largest in central and south Alabama," said Horace Horn AEC, Inc. Vice President
With recovery from natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina, the demand for lumber is at an all time high at this time.
The group of leaders hopes to use the data, and other information in helping lure timber related business to their respective communities.
The Alabama Electric co-op sponsoring the timber meeting provides energy to some 39 Alabama counties and ten in the panhandle.