NC State Extension

Economic Impact Data

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The forest sector is a major contributor to North Carolina’s economic well being and it continues to grow. In 2016 the forest sector contributed $12.6 billion dollars to our state gross domestic product, up from $10.9 billion dollars in 2013. The total economic contribution in industry output to the state’s economy in 2016 was $32.7 billion, supporting about 150,000 full- and part-time jobs with a payroll of $7.8 billion. For a complete view of North Carolina’s Forest and Forest Product Industries in 2013 read “North Carolina’s Forests and Forest Products Industry by the Numbers, 2013.” For the complete view of the economic contribution of the North Carolina forest sector in 2016 read “Economic Contribution of the Forest Sector in North Carolina, 2016

NC’s Forest Sector…in 2013…

  • produced $18.5 billion in output and employed 70,300 people, with a payroll of $3.8 billion;
  • directly generated $912 million in state, local, and federal tax revenues;
  • led in total output, value added, labor income, and state tax generation with paper manufacturing;
  • led in employment with wood furniture manufacturing;
  • led the South in logs and wood products exports, continuing a decade-long trend;
  • along with timber income, contributed $29.4 billion in output and 144,800 jobs with a payroll of $7.36 billion to North Carolina’s economy;
  • contributed $10.9 billion to gross state product;
  • generated 1,060 jobs throughout the state for every 1,000 forestry and forest products jobs; and
  • contributed an additional $587,000 to the overall North Carolina economy for every $1.0 million generated in forestry and forest products output.

NC’s Forest Sector…in 2016…

  • North Carolina has about 18.1 million acres of timberland, which supports a vibrant forest product industry throughout the state.
  • In 2016, the forest sector in North Carolina had a total economic contribution of $32.7 billion in industry output to the state’s economy, supporting about 150,000 full- and part-time jobs with a payroll of $7.8 billion.
  • The wood-based industry is the top employer among manufacturing sectors in the state.
  • Every job created in the forest sector resulted in another 1.1 jobs in North Carolina.
  • On average, every dollar generated in the forest sector contributed an additional 51 cents to the rest of the North Carolina economy.
  • The forest sector in North Carolina contributed about $894.1 million to state and local taxes and $878.8 million to federal taxes.
  • Forest products firms exported about $1.4 billion worth of forest products to foreign countries.

To learn more about the forest sector’s economic impact for a specific county select from the list below.

Forest Impacts by County in North Carolina

North Carolina Counties Year
Alamance 2012 2014
Alexander 2012 2014
Alleghany 2012 2014
Anson 2012 2014
Ashe 2012 2014
Avery 2012 2014
Beaufort 2012 2014
Bertie 2012 2014
Bladen 2012 2014
Brunswick 2012 2014
Buncombe 2012 2014
Burke 2012 2014
Cabarrus 2012 2014
Caldwell 2012 2014
Camden 2012 2014
Carteret 2012 2014
Caswell 2012 2014
Catawba 2012 2014
Chatham 2012 2014
Cherokee 2012 2014
Chowan 2012 2014
Clay 2012 2014
Cleveland 2012 2014
Columbus 2012 2014
Craven 2012 2014
Cumberland 2012 2014
Currituck 2012 2014
Dare 2012 2014
Davidson 2012 2014
Davie 2012 2014
Duplin 2012 2014
Durham 2012 2014
Edgecombe 2012 2014
Forsyth 2012 2014
Franklin 2012 2014
Gaston 2012 2014
Gates 2012 2014
Graham 2012 2014
Granville 2012 2014
Greene 2012 2014
Guilford 2012 2014
Halifax 2012 2014
Harnett 2012 2014
Haywood 2012 2014
Henderson 2012 2014
Hertford 2012 2014
Hoke 2012 2014
Hyde 2012 2014
Iredell 2012 2014
Jackson 2012 2014
Johnston 2012 2014
Jones 2012 2014
Lee 2012 2014
Lenoir 2012 2014
Lincoln 2012 2014
Macon 2012 2014
Madison 2012 2014
Martin 2012 2014
McDowell 2012 2014
Mecklenburg 2012 2014
Mitchell 2012 2014
Montgomery 2012 2014
Moore 2012 2014
Nash 2012 2014
New Hanover 2012 2014
Northampton 2012 2014
Onslow 2012 2014
Orange 2012 2014
Pamlico 2012 2014
Pasquotank 2012 2014
Pender 2012 2014
Perquimans 2012 2014
Person 2012 2014
Pitt 2012 2014
Polk 2012 2014
Randolph 2012 2014
Richmond 2012 2014
Robeson 2012 2014
Rockingham 2012 2014
Rowan 2012 2014
Rutherford 2012 2014
Sampson 2012 2014
Scotland 2012 2014
Stanly 2012 2014
Stokes 2012 2014
Surry 2012 2014
Swain 2012 2014
Transylvania 2012 2014
Tyrell 2012 2014
Union 2012 2014
Vance 2012 2014
Wake 2012 2014
Warren 2012 2014
Washington 2012 2014
Watauga 2012 2014
Wayne 2012 2014
Wilkes 2012 2014
Wilson 2012 2014
Yadkin 2012 2014
Yancey 2012 2014

Written By

Photo of Robert Bardon, N.C. Cooperative ExtensionDr. Robert BardonAssociate Dean of Extension, Department Extension Leader & Professor (919) 515-5575 rebardon@ncsu.eduForestry & Environmental Resources - NC State University
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