Employment Stabilizes for State's Timber Plants

by Gwen Moritz  on Monday, Nov. 19, 2012 12:00 am  

Maxwell Hardwood Flooring of Monticello, which manufactured the flooring used in Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art at Bentonville, reports adding 70 employees in the past year.  (Photo by Michael Pirnique)

Executives like Steve Anthony may not be particularly optimistic about the return of the building boom (see this week's Exec Q&A), but Arkansas Business’ annual survey of forest products companies indicates that employment has been stable or a bit improved over the past year.

Georgia-Pacific LLC of Atlanta, the largest timber company operating in Arkansas, reports 2,500 employees, the same as when the survey was done in December 2011. Evergreen Packaging Group, No. 2 on our list, added nearly 200 employees, and Domtar and International Paper Co. also added a few dozen.

(See the list of the Largest Forest Products Companies in the state either by downloading a free PDF or by purchasing a spreadsheet version.)

RockTenn Co. of Norcross, Ga., the successor to Smurfit-Stone Container Corp., reported 634 employees in Arkansas, up from the 152 it reported last year. No company spokesman could be reached to explain the increase in employment.

Anthony’s company, Anthony Timberlands of Bearden, showed stable employment of 540, but that could increase. Anthony told Arkansas Business that he plans to resume multishift operations at the pine mill in Bearden to take advantage of economies of scale.

Maxwell Hardwood Flooring Inc. of Monticello, owned by CEO and President Thomas V. Maxwell, reported 200 employees in the recent survey, up more than 50 percent from the 130 it claimed less than a year ago. That moved Maxwell from No. 19 on last year’s list to No. 13, displacing Potlatch Corp. of Spokane, Wash.



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