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Location: Bartow, WV
Years in Business: >50 years
NCIF Role: Technical Assistance
Sector: Forest Products
Partners: USDA REAP 
Impact: Energy savings

Inter-State Hardwoods has been in the sawmill business for decades, tracing its origins back to the late 1930s. The family-owned sawmill primarily manufactures hardwood boards and moulding, and is committed to sourcing its timber locally and sustainably.  All of the timber that comes through Interstate Hardwoods comes from Appalachian forests, and is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and Appalachian Hardwood Manufacturers, Inc. 

The Opportunity

Inter-State Hardwood provides 200 local jobs in Bartow, and their demonstrated dedication to sustainable forestry practices align perfectly with NCIF mission of supporting both economic and environmental vitality. So when they decided to take steps toward making their operations more energy efficient, we knew they were a great fit. 

The Deal

NCIF first worked with Inter-State through our Energy Efficiency Initiative to develop an application for a USDA Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) grant, which helps rural small businesses and farms offset the cost of energy efficient upgrades. Inter-State Hardwood was able to use the grant to install energy efficient LED lighting in their facility, which is expected to save $2.8 million over the life of the bulbs. 

Two years later, they came back to us again for our expertise. We covered the cost of a consultant to help them apply for a second REAP grant—this time to replace their 30-year old wood-fired dryer kilns. The three new dryer kilns are expected to reduce the amount of wood used in the biomass boiler (which heats the kilns) by 40 percent. 

Impact

Bartow is located in Pocahontas County, designated “at-risk” by the Appalachian Regional Commission. Inter-State Hardwoods is providing important, quality jobs in the community, while supporting best practices that will ensure that the forests that provide their business are preserved for future generations. The company’s investment in energy efficiency is a great example of their adaptability and leadership, and the assistance provided by the REAP grants to offset the cost made it possible. 

NCIF business advisory services help companies like this one make the most of their dollars by providing expertise on the “nuts and bolts” of small business—ranging from expertise in funding opportunities to accounting assistance to business plan development. Our comprehensive suite of services gives businesses across Appalachia who are supporting the community, the economy and the environment the financing and expertise they need to thrive. 

Visit the Inter-State Hardwoods website