Web Site Promotes La. Forest Industry

Richard Vlosky, Bogren, Richard C.  |  8/24/2007 2:26:07 AM

News Release Distributed 08/23/07

The LSU AgCenter’s Louisiana Forest Products Development Center recently launched a new Web site designed to promote economic development in Louisiana’s forest sector.

The forest products industries site allows users to search more than 1,000 companies by product, parish or company name, said Richard Vlosky, director of the Forest Products Development Center.

The location of any company selected is identified on a Louisiana map powered by Google software, and company contact information appears when a map icon is clicked, Vlosky said. The Web site can be found at: www.lsuagcenter.com/forestindustries.

Developed by Vlosky and Fred Piazza, LSU AgCenter chief information officer, the project was funded by the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry and Louisiana Economic Development.

"This is an example of how collaboration between the LSU AgCenter and state government agencies can facilitate development of an innovative tool to power economic development," Vlosky said.

"In addition to being a valuable business and promotional tool for the industry, the Web site information will identify spatial company clustering, which is a useful tool for economic development planners, as clusters tend to have efficiencies and scale economies that attract additional industry," he added.

The Web site won a gold award for the best innovative use of communication technology from the international Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Life and Human Sciences. ACE is the professional association for communications and information technology professionals in higher education.

The forest sector is the largest segment of Louisiana agriculture, according to the LSU AgCenter’s annual Louisiana Summary of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Including solid wood and pulp and paper, the forest products industry contributed nearly $4.9 billion to the Louisiana economy in 2006.

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Contact: Richard Vlosky at (225) 578-4527 or rvlosky@agcenter.lsu.edu
Writer: Rick Bogren at (225) 578-5839 or rbogren@agcenter.lsu.edu

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