A new record high has been achieved for U.S. hardwood exports to India in 2021 as
both the value and volume of hardwood lumber shipped to the country was more than double the
previous high set in 2019. The total value of American hardwood lumber, logs and veneer exported
to India reached USD 12.22 million last year despite global lumber shortages, uncertainty in freight
rates and availability of containers, and generally increasing prices across all species. Overall
exports of both U.S. hardwood lumber and veneer to India were up year-on-year, whilst exports of
logs continued their downward spiral, in line with the general shift seen in recent years by Indian
buyers towards importing value-added kiln-dried lumber instead of logs.
The statistics, which have been compiled from the latest data released by the United States
Department of Agriculture (USDA), reveal that total hardwood lumber shipped from the United
States to India increased by 292 percent in value to USD 6.50 million (up from USD 1.66 million in
2020) and by 288 percent in volume to 11,109 cubic meters (up from 2,863 cubic meters in 2020). At
the same time, direct exports of American hardwood veneers to the market increased by 9 percent
to reach USD 2.69 million. The increases seen last year prove that 2020 was a temporary dip in an
otherwise upward trend. Significantly, the value and volume of logs exported to India declined by 3
percent to reach USD 3.03 million and by 18 percent to reach 5,411 cubic meters respectively.
The top five American hardwood species exported were hickory (USD 2.056 million and 2,941m3),
white oak (USD 1.5 million and 2,223m3), red alder (USD 1.012 million and 3,028m3), red oak (USD
815,000 and 1,353m3), and ash (USD 804,000 and 1,184m3). Significant increases were seen in the
value and volume of exports of all species – hickory (141 percent and 115 percent), white oak (454
percent and 375 percent), red alder (4,013 percent and 3,548 percent), red oak (731 percent and 696
percent), ash (360 percent and 293 percent), walnut (406 percent and 146 percent) and maple (183
percent and 170 percent). Aiming to support and sustain this increased interest in American
hardwoods, AHEC has announced its participation at INDIAWOOD.
“Limited domestic hardwood supplies, coupled with strong sustained growth in the retail furniture,
handicraft and hospitality sectors has driven the demand for new species, making India an
attractive and long-term prospective market for U.S. hardwoods. With India making genuine
progress towards fulfilling its potential as a major market for U.S. hardwoods, AHEC is participating
at INDIAWOOD with an American hardwood pavilion, which includes several U.S.-based hardwood
and veneer exporters. We anticipate that there will be a significant amount of interest from visitors
in the American Hardwood Pavilion and that the U.S. companies taking part in the show will find it to
be very worthwhile,” concluded Roderick Wiles, AHEC Regional Director.