October 18, 2017  
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A Week to Celebrate Forests and Print

It’s commonly accepted science that leaves turn color in the autumn when changes in air temperature and sunlight hours trigger a chemical process during which the leaves cease their food-making, causing the green chlorophyll in the leaves to break down and reveal the carotenes and xanthophyll pigments lying beneath.

We here at Ahead of the Curve would like to offer an alternative, more speculative theory: What if the leaves are donning their decorative hues in celebration of National Forest Products Week?

For the past 57 years, a presidential proclamation has designated the third week of October as National Forest Products Week. This year, the dates fall from October 15 through October 21. The goal is to recognize the value that forest products provide to the American economy and way of life. The official White House Proclamation, as signed on Monday by the President of the United States, reads in part:

“During National Forest Products Week, we recognize the invaluable contribution forest products make to our daily lives, the forest products industry's importance to our economy, and the incredible beauty and recreational opportunities provided by our Nation's woodlands. This year, many of our forests and surrounding communities face blazing wildfires, so we also pray for the safety of our people, our first responders, and our forest habitats.

“Our Nation is blessed with millions of acres of forested lands. These lands produce abundant renewable and sustainable natural resources that support our economy. They provide 2.4 million jobs, primarily in rural communities across America, and produce products that help improve our everyday lives. Whether we are writing a note, building a home, or sending a delivery, paper and wood products enable us to do our jobs and live comfortable lives.

“America's thriving forest products market helps protect and preserve our abundant forests for future generations. Demand for forest products encourages landowners to replant and maintain healthy forests, knowing that through proper stewardship and responsible management, our precious forests will continue to contribute to our economic prosperity and quality of life.

“During National Forest Products Week, we acknowledge and celebrate the many uses of our parks, forests, and woodlands, and we honor the dedicated Americans who work to ensure our forests remain productive and magnificent for future generations.” (Read the entire proclamation.)

Throughout the industry, paper companies, state forestry associations, and other organizations are joining the celebration on social media by tagging posts with #CelebrateFP or #ForestProductsWeek to share perspectives and statistics on the impact of forest products in everyday life. “Wood is on the rise - literally. We’re seeing it used more and more around the world,” reads a tweet from the American Wood Council. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources tweeted, “WI forest products industry provides more than 64,000 jobs and is the No. 1 employer in 10 counties.”

In a National Forest Products Week statement from the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA), President and CEO Donna Harman writes, “In rural and urban communities across 45 states, our companies provide family-wage jobs to approximately 900,000 men and women and our industry accounts for four percent of the total US manufacturing GDP. Paper and wood products manufacturers rank among the top 10 employers and utilize renewable, recyclable materials in innovative and highly-efficient processes to make products we rely on today and will need tomorrow.”

Wednesday is International Print Day
Is it a coincidence that International Print Day falls smack in the middle of National Forest Products Week? The connection between forests, paper, and print is undeniable—so it only makes sense.

The 4th annual observation falls on Wednesday, October 18. International Print Day is organized by Print Media Centr, a diversified collective of print and print media enthusiasts who bring relevant and topical information and resources to the print and marketing community. According to the group, the theme for 2017’s celebration is “THE PRINT EXPERIENCE… everything that makes print unique in the marketing mix, and all the tools that make the print experience possible.”

The goal of the event is to “spread the word” about the positive impact of print through social media. “There are many ways for students and artists, printers and their supply chain partners to participate,” according to the official website, www.InternationalPrintDay.org. “During IPD share your work, your favorite print samples and applications or simply share a moment with fellow enthusiasts using the hashtag #IPD17. Interact and network with the global print community to share your love of print. Last year, the IPD hashtag on Twitter generated an impressive 30-million timeline deliveries in just under 24 hours, so the push for 2017 is to go bigger.”


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