The goal of the Vermont Forest Future Strategic Roadmap project was to evaluate the current state of Vermont’s forest economy and to identify the opportunities to strengthen, modernize, promote, and protect the forest economy into the future.

This process has engaged the parties representing all users of Vermont’s forests in a robust public engagement process and developed a 10-year plan of recommended actionable strategies to protect the long-term viability of forest-based businesses, via the Vermont Forest Future Strategic Roadmap.

The Vermont Forest Future Strategic Roadmap delivers actionable strategies and practical recommendations.

  • The Vermont Forest Future Strategic Roadmap builds on previous efforts to provide actionable strategies and practical recommendations for the development and support of a thriving, modern, and strong forest products sector and the broader forest economy that will continue to be a significant source of economic activity in Vermont and provide economic incentives for forest landowners to maintain intact forest land and practice sound forest management.
  • The Vermont Forest Future Strategic Roadmap was developed with extensive public stakeholder input and an advisory panel of stakeholder representatives.
  • The Vermont Forest Future Strategic Roadmap is a living document, which will reviewed periodically and updated at least every ten years.

The following are some important definitions that helped frame the Strategic Roadmap.

  • Forest economy: the economic system and interrelated connections of Vermont’s forests with the consumers, producers, and providers of forest products and forest-based services and uses.
  • Forest products sector: economic sub-sector that includes forest products enterprises and wood products manufacturers.
  • Forest products enterprises: businesses primarily engaged as forestry service providers or operators (including harvesting and trucking of forest products) and forest or wood product manufacturers, craftspeople, brokers, retailers, wholesalers, distributors, etc.
  • Wood products manufacturers: businesses that produce a value-added physical and tangible good or product through special manufacturing, marketing, crafting, or processing forest or primary wood products.
  • Working forests: refers to forestland managed for the purpose of producing forest products, goods, and services, including the intangible public benefits provided by those forestlands such as aesthetics, contributions to the outdoor recreation and tourism sectors, and exemplifying the ecological, community, and land values of Vermonters.
  • Forest product (10 V.S.A. § 2602): logs; pulpwood; veneer; bolt wood; wood chips; stud wood; poles; pilings; biomass; fuel wood; maple sap; or bark.

Methodological Approach

A successful planning process is based on three primary principles: It is future oriented, data driven, and people focused. The ‘future orientation’ is particularly important to take account of rapidly emerging social and technological trends. The ‘data driven’ ensures the plan is built on solid research, public input, and information, and is measurable. The ‘people focused’ is important to build support for the vision for the region, and to harness the best possible input into the visioning process.