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What do Louisiana and Mississippi Nonindustrial Private Forest Landowners Think about Forest Certification?

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Abstract:

Nonindustrial private forest (NIPF) landowners own the majority of timberlands in the southern United States. As forest certification becomes more prevalent, it is important to understand the implications for NIPF landowners. This study, conducted in 2005–2006, reveals how well NIPF landowners in Louisiana and Mississippi understand forest certification, willingness to pay to become certified, and general perceptions about the certification process and implementation requirements. We surveyed 1,200 randomly selected NIPF landowners from each state that owned 10 ac or more of timberland in 2005. A total of 591 usable surveys resulted in an overall adjusted response rate of 30%. Forty percent of respondents believe certification is necessary on public lands. However, their lowest level of agreement is with the need for certification on private forestlands. Respondents believe certification in the United States is driven by environmental nongovernmental organizations rather than by demand in the marketplace. Private landowner organizations and approved professional foresters are the most trusted entities to administer and monitor certification. Results also suggest that respondents are generally not averse to having certifiers monitor their forest management activities; however, a majority are unwilling to bear the cost of certification.

Keywords: Louisiana; Mississippi; certification; nonindustrial private forest land owners

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2007

More about this publication?
  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Southern Journal of Applied Forestry covers an area from Virginia and Kentucky south to as far west as Oklahoma and east Texas.
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