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Dynamics of Large Corporate Forestland Ownerships in the United States


Emma Sass
Marla Markowski-Lindsay
Andrew Hartsell
Emily Huff
Amanda Robillard



Publication type:

Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Primary Station(s):

Northern Research Station


Journal of Forestry


Ownership of forestland in the United States has changed in recent decades, including the proliferation of timber investment management organizations (TIMOs) and real estate investment trusts (REITs), with the potential to alter forest management and timber supply. This article quantifies forest ownership transitions among ownership categories between 2007 and 2017 and investigates how and why large corporate ownerships own and manage their forestlands. Ownership transitions were determined from refined USDA Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis data; we also conducted a survey of large corporate forestland ownerships. Corporate forestland acreage increased between 2007 and 2017, while family and public forestland decreased. Large corporate landowners report multidimensional, financially focused land management, although industry, timber investment management organizations, real estate investment trusts, and other owners report some different motivations and income streams. This work provides a baseline to track future ownership transitions and the behaviors of large corporate forestland owners.


Sass, Emma M; Markowski-Lindsay, Marla; Butler, Brett J; Caputo, Jesse; Hartsell, Andrew; Huff, Emily; Robillard, Amanda. 2021. Dynamics of Large Corporate Forestland Ownerships in the United States. Journal of Forestry. 119(4): 363-375.


Publication Notes

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  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.