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Ohio State University Extension


Muskingum County’s Forest Economy

Agriculture and Natural Resources
Eric McConnell, PhD, Forest Operations and Products Specialist, Ohio State University Extension
Mark Mechling, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Ohio State University Extension, Muskingum County

Muskingum County contains 664 square miles (425,300 acres) of land and is home to 85,950 citizens[1]. There are 187 industries in the county[2], with the median household earning an income of $40,600[1]. Major employers include businesses in the sectors of food services, state and local governments, health services, and wholesale trade businesses[2].

Figure 1. Forest industries contribute 1.65% to Muskingum County's economy[2,3].

The land resources of Muskingum County provide many economic benefits. The county's 1,140 agricultural farms produce agronomic crops and livestock, among others[3]. An abundance of wooded acres are also present, providing community support to the county's forest industries. These businesses generate $78.9 million in industrial output and $5.29 million in taxes[2].

Some of the many contributions Muskingum County's forests and forest industries provide to the local economy are illustrated in this fact sheet using key figures and statistics. The figures describing Muskingum County's forest resources were constructed using data from the 2011 forest survey database provided by the United States Forest Service's Forest Inventory and Analysis. Those explaining the county's forest industries were developed from data analyzed using IMPLAN®. Table 1 summarizes the IMPLAN® model for Muskingum County's economy. (For more information regarding IMPLAN® and the economic impact analyses for Muskingum County, please contact the first author in the School of Environment and Natural Resources.)

Benefits of Woodland Management

  • Properly managing your woodland improves forest health, aesthetics, and wildlife habitat. It also provides soil stabilization, clean water, carbon sequestration, self-satisfaction, and a potential source of income.
  • Managing timber requires less long-term inputs compared to many other land uses.
  • You are often able to obtain cost share funds to establish your woodland, property tax credits while managing your forest property, and preferable tax treatment at harvest.
  • Standing timber is a stable form of wealth, often comparable in performance to mutual fund investments.

How Can I Learn to Better Manage My Woodland?

  • Become actively involved in the stewardship of your property.
  • Join your local forestry association.
  • Search Ohio State University Extension's website Ohioline ( for further study of forestry related topics.
  • Contact your local service forester at the Ohio Division of Forestry to help you develop a management plan for your property.
  • Obtain soils and management information for trees suited to your soil types at your local Soil and Water Conservation District.
  • Enlist the assistance of a professional forester when planning a timber sale.
  • Consider hiring an Ohio Master Logging Company to conduct your harvesting operation.

Figure 2. Muskingum County contains approximately 130,000 forested acres, which is 49.8% of the total land cover[1,5]. Figure 3. Muskingum County's farmland and forestland production, 2010[2]. This figure does not include harvests from government lands.

Figure 4. Muskingum County's forestland is 89.8% privately owned, which amounts to 190,000 acres[5]. Figure 5. Muskingum County contains over 1.2 billion board feet of sawtimber[5]. The top five species make up 50.1% of the total volume.

Figure 6. Direct economic impact of Muskingum County's forest industries, 2010[2]. Labor income, value-added, and industrial output are represented on the left Y-axis, and employment is represented on the right Y-axis. Figure 7. Muskingum County's forest industry employers by sector, 2010[2].

Figure 8. Direct tax impact of Muskingum County's forest industries, 2010[2].

For More Information, Please Consult the Following Sources

School of Environment and Natural Resources
The Ohio State University
2021 Coffey Road
Columbus, OH 43210
Phone: (614) 688-3421
Ohio State University Extension, Muskingum County
225 Underwood St., Room 6
Zanesville, OH 43701
Phone: (740) 454-0144
Fax: (740) 454-0154
Ohio Division of Forestry
10517 Canal Rd.
Hebron, OH 43025
Phone: (740) 928-7034
Fax: (740) 928-6039
Muskingum County Soil and Water Conservation District
225 Underwood St., Suite 10
Zanesville, OH 43701
Phone: (740) 454-2027
Fax: (740) 454-1451
Ohio Society of American Foresters
Ohio Forestry Association
Master Logging Company Program
Office: 746 Morrison Road, Columbus, OH 43230
Mail: 1100-H Brandywine Blvd.,
Zanesville, OH 43701
Phone: (614) 497-9580
Fax: (614) 497-9581
Call Before You Cut
Phone: (877) 424-8288

Table 1. Direct industrial contributions within Morgan County’s economy, 2010[2]. The IMPLAN model’s 440 sectors were aggregated into 12 industries by each sector’s 2-digit North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code number. A (----) indicates less than five employees or a value less than $500,000 to prevent potential disclosure of individual company information.

Industry NAICS Description Employment Labor Income Value Added Output
11 Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing, and Hunting 411 $4,693,479 $7,508,949 $23,130,105
     113 Forestry and Logging 14 (----) (----) $1,189,883
21 Mining 49 $3,240,761 $5,375,110 $7,198,844
22 Utilities 30 $1,814,652 $10,523,272 $12,481,078
23 Construction 366 $4,871,396 $8,342,981 $33,374,556
31–33 Manufacturing 441 $27,031,898 $50,832,290 $147,848,118
     321 Wood Products Manufacturing 19 $620,461 $733,682 $2,801,157
     322 Pulp and Paper Manufacturing (----) (----) (----) (----)
     337 Wood Furniture Manufacturing 32 $1,268,738 $2,289,139 $5,172,891
42 Wholesale Trade 114 $6,961,440 $13,043,478 $17,001,778
44–45 Retail Trade 465 $7,722,557 $13,175,598 $22,184,209
48–49 Transportation and Warehousing 238 $4,419,883 $6,503,222 $26,235,762
51–56 Professional Services 773 $16,477,487 $73,501,046 $119,352,871
61–72 Educational, Health, and Recreation Services 1,048 $17,652,010 $22,503,706 $48,430,031
81 Other Services 490 $5,073,164 $5,560,337 $21,334,562
92 Government & non-NAICS Industries 769 $32,066,867 $37,007,265 $45,735,396
      Forest Industries 67 $2,533,116 $3,657,725 $9,583,789
Total 5,194 $132,025,596 $253,877,254 $524,307,312


Acre: A unit of land measure equal to 43,560 square feet (208.7 feet x 208.7 feet). One square mile equals 640 acres.

Direct Economic Impact: The effect generated by the industry of interest in an economic impact analysis. This is measured through employment, value-added, and industrial output produced to meet demand for the manufactured product(s).

Direct Federal Tax Impact: Taxes collected by the United States government. These taxes are generated from labor income, indirect business taxes, households, and corporations associated with the industry of interest.

Direct State and Local Tax Impact: Taxes paid to state, county, and municipal governments. These taxes are generated from labor income, indirect business taxes, households, and corporations associated with the industry of interest.

Employment: The total wage and salary and self-employed jobs in a geographical area. 

Indirect Business Taxes: Sales and excise taxes paid by individuals to businesses through normal operations. They do not include taxes on corporate profits and dividends.

Industrial Output: The total value of production measured as the sum of value-added plus the cost of buying goods and services to produce the product(s).

Labor Income: Wages and benefits paid to employees plus proprietary income for self-employed work.

Sawtimber Volume: Net volume in board feet by the International 1/4-inch rule of sawlogs in sawtimber trees on timberland. Gross volume minus the deductions that affect use for lumber equals net volume. 

Value-Added: The sum of labor income, interest, profits, and indirect business taxes.


[1] United States Census. 2010. United States Census state and county quick facts.

[2] Minnesota IMPLAN Group. 2013. 2010 Ohio state and national package database. MIG, Inc., Hudson, WI.

[3] United States Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Service. 2010. Ohio county summaries.

[4] United States Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis. 2013. Northeast Forest Inventory and Analysis Methodology: Common definitions used by FIA.

[5] United States Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis Database. 2010.

[6] Minnesota IMPLAN Group. 2004. IMPLAN Professional®: Users Guide, Analysis Guide, Data Guide. 3rd edition. MIG, Inc.

Originally posted Jul 30, 2013.