Oaks Unlimited named Exporter of the Year
Pictured from left to right with the Exporter of the Year award are John Hammond, international marketing specialist, Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler, Joe Pryor, president of Oaks Unlimited Inc., and wife Karen Pryor, and Peter Thornton, director of the NCDA&CS international marketing section.
Oaks Unlimited Inc., a Waynesville lumber company, has been named 2016 Exporter of the Year by the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
The award honors agribusinesses that have excelled in exporting their products around the world. Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler recognized Oaks Unlimited for its exporting success at the Ag Development Forum on Feb. 4 at the State Fairgrounds. Company President Joe Pryor accepted the award on behalf of the company.
“Oaks Unlimited has shown the world the quality of North Carolina forestry products for more than 40 years,” Troxler said. “The company now exports 75 percent of its production to a dozen countries outside the United States.”
Oaks Unlimited specializes in the production of high-quality, kiln-dried ash, cherry, hickory, poplar, red oak and white oak. The company recently expanded by purchasing 10 acres adjoining its existing facility, adding a boiler, dry kiln and new lumber shed for air drying under cover. In 2014, the company also purchased a sawmill to supply its dry kilns with Appalachian hardwoods.
The company offers certified lumber through the Forest Stewardship Council. It also supplies Appalachian hardwoods that are verified sustainable by Appalachian Hardwood Manufacturers. Oaks Unlimited is an active member of the North Carolina Forestry Association, National Hardwood Lumber Association, American Hardwood Export Council and Hardwoods Manufacturers Association.
The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services assists local agribusinesses with growing their companies by creating international programs, events, trade missions and helping develop new markets overseas. For more information about the department’s International Trade Office, go to www.ncagexports.com.