The check-off is an industry funded program established for the purpose of growing the market for softwood lumber products in the United States.
•    The check-off as approved by a super-majority vote of the softwood lumber industry in 2011.
•    Established under authority provided by Congress the check-off and its programs are governed by the Softwood Lumber Board with oversight by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
•    Funds provided by industry support marketing and research programs to grow demand.
•    Check-offs are in place for a variety of agricultural products (i.e. milk, eggs, pork, beef, blueberries, etc.).
All U.S. manufacturers and importers shipping at least 15 million board feet annually into the U.S. market invest in the check-off.
Softwood lumber, flooring, and siding products identified in the Harmonized Tariff System of the United States under headings 4401.10, 4409.10, and 4418.99.10, are covered by the check-off and are promoted by the Softwood Lumber Board’s programs. For a specific list, please see paragraph 1217.52(h) of the Softwood Lumber Order.
The promotional work supported by the check-off is funded by an industry assessment of $0.35 per thousand board feet.

• The check-off is governed by the Softwood Lumber Board, which is elected by softwood lumber manufacturers and importers who invest in the check off.
• The regionally balanced board has 19 seats in six regions with12 U.S., 6 Canadian and 1 overseas seats.
• The Board reflects the diversity of the industry that invests in the check-off with respect to regional differences, company size, family owned independents, variety of products, experience of members, methods of production and distribution, marketing strategies, and the other factors that will bring different perspectives and ideas to the table.

Yes, there are three exemptions:

• a small company exemption for domestic manufacturers or importers shipping less than 15 million board feet of covered softwood lumber products into the U.S. market;
• an equity exemption of.15 mmbf for all companies who pay an assessment; and
• an export exemption which exempts all softwood lumber products exported out of the United States.

Yes. USDA requires an evaluation every five years, and the Softwood Lumber Board supports an ongoing performance evaluation by the independent, third-party evaluator, Prime Consulting. At the end of its first five years of operations, the evaluator has shown that the Board’s programs generated 2.59 billion board feet in new demand, primarily in the non-residential, multi-family residential, and commercial sectors.
The court did not vacate the check off order, and all program obligations remain in effect, including collecting assessments, funding programs, and the existing exemption. For a more in-depth discussion of the case please go to this link.

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