Your attendance and participation made SFPEC 2016 a success!

Charleston has seen more than its fair share of natural disasters, but like after every earthquake, flood and tornado that came before this storm, the city not only survived, but thrived. Despite Hurricane Matthew barreling through Charleston less than a week before the event, the conference came off without a hitch, and we thank all the speakers and participants who made it an overwhelming success.

Please visit our Agenda and Speakers page, where you can view/download the speakers' presentations from the conference.

You can also view/download the complete conference agenda booklet here.

Lynn Michaelis of Forest Economic Advisers delivers the keynote address "The South's Role In Meeting The Global Demand For Forest Products" at the Southern Forest Products Export Conference Monday, Oct. 17, 2016.


US Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell opened the proceedings with his presentation, "A Region-Wide Vision For Retaining Forests As Forests," at the Southern Forest Products Export Conference Monday, Oct. 17, 2016.


About the conference

The idea for an export conference as a way to assist our Southeastern partners in the forest products industry grow their markets began at the height of the Great Recession. The domestic housing collapse called for a global marketing approach. Seeing this need, the South Carolina Forestry Commission hosted a Forest Products Export Conference for our local forest industry in Newberry, South Carolina in 2011. The success of this meeting exceeded our expectations as companies came to hear about research on key global markets as well as lessons learned by successful companies.

This initial conference got the attention of neighboring states and eventually prompted an alliance among North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia to hold the Mid-Atlantic Export Conference. North Carolina hosted the meeting in New Bern in 2013, and Virginia hosted it in Portsmouth in 2014.

The South Carolina Forestry Commission agreed to host the export conference this fall in the historic port city of Charleston, a fitting locale as forest products are the state's largest export commodity from the Port of Charleston. The decision was made to expand the reach of the conference to all 13 Southern states.

The focus of the two-day meeting will be on the key global markets where Southern forest products can compete. We have world-class speakers lined up to address market conditions in key countries and to share the experiences of successful exporters covering a variety of forest products.

We welcome you to Charleston to take part in this conference. See you there!