|FOREST PRODUCTS MARKET NEWS - DECEMBER 2003|
|Exports of Darker U.S. Species to Japan Soar
By Lashonda McLeod, Agricultural Marketing Specialist
|U.S. exports of walnut lumber to Japan increased from $3.2 million in 2001 to $4.5 million, in 2002. During January - October of this year, walnut lumber exports to Japan reached $8.6 million, well above the $3.1 million of exports recorded during the comparable period of 2002. U.S. exports of cherry to Japan during January - October of this year, increased to 53 percent to $1.9 million, compared to last year's $1.2 million.
Japanese consumers are seeking products that fit their image and lifestyle. Trends have traditionally influenced the type of wood species used in the manufacturing of furniture and cabinets. The growing demand for more stylish furniture in the Japanese high-end market has created demand for American hardwoods. Recently, sellers have noticed that the Japanese demand for high-grade dark lumber has increased substantially. As indicated in Figure 1, walnut shipments to Japan have escalated. Japanese art college students have shown a strong interest in including cherry and walnut in furniture design projects. Also, in the commercial districts of major cities, furniture showrooms display sleek, streamlined styles that have incorporated solid wood U.S. species such as walnut.
The American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) and the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service jointly sponsor export promotion programs to promote U.S. exports of hardwood lumber, plywood, veneer, and moldings. AHEC maintains offices in Japan, Europe, Southeast Asia, China, Korea, and Mexico, in addition to its Washington, DC headquarters, to serve the needs of the global community. For more information about AHEC, consult their website at www.ahec.org.
Revised Implementation Date for Importing SWPM into United States
By Tony Halstead, Agricultural Economist
USDA's Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has revised the
implementation date for the new import requirements for Solid Wood
Packaging Material (SWPM), from January 1, 2004 to April or May 2004.
Starting in January 2004, APHIS will begin issuing notices to the National
Plant Protection Organization of the shipping country for material not
appropriately treated and marked. No additional action will be taken on
noncompliant material, however, until the final implementation date. The
changes in the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) Guidelines
for Regulating Wood Packaging Material in International Trade will affect
all goods that utilize wood packing materials in any form, and are based
upon IPPC Guidelines.
APHIS still anticipates phasing in the enforcement of the new measures, that is, accepting noncompliant wood packing (untreated and unmarked wood packing) for a period of time. During the beginning of the phase-in period, noncompliant wood packaging will be subject to inspection for pests and, if pest findings warrant, treatment at the point of entry. APHIS will also notify the National Plant Protection Organization of the shipping country if noncompliant shipments are found. As the phase-in period progresses, further robust actions will be taken for non-compliant material until full implementation is achieved. At this point, a minimum number of options will be provided for non-compliant material, including re-exportation.
On October 30, 2003, APHIS revised the implementation date for the pending import requirements for SWPM from January 1, 2004 to April or May 2004.
Starting in January 2004, APHIS will begin issuing notices to National Plant Protection Organizations for SWPM imported into the United States that has not been appropriately treated and marked. However, no additional action will be taken on noncompliant material until the implementation date. The notices will serve as an information dissemination tool until such time.
In anticipation of the finalization of the rule, APHIS encourages all importers to meet the conditions of the draft rule, which requires that all wood packaging material be appropriately treated and marked under an official program developed and overseen by the National Plant Protection Organization in the country of export.
The United States’ largest trading partners, Canada and Mexico, will implement the IPPC Guidelines related to SWPM on January 2, 2004. Although the United States intends to delay implementation of the new requirements until spring of 2004, APHIS will begin notifying countries of non-compliance beginning on January 2, 2004.
Additional information can be found on the APHIS website, http://www.aphis.usda.gov/ppq/swp/
|USDA Home | FAS Home | FFPD Home | Directions to The Portals|
|Forest Products Site | Fishery Products Site | Industry Partners | FAS Export Programs | Search | Site Map|
|USDA Press Releases | FAS Press Releases | FFPD Archived Press Releases | Contact List|
|Last modified: Friday, January 19, 2007|