North American Black Walnut, (Juglans nigra ), been one of the most valuable hardwoods in the industry for generations. Consumers have regularly chosen walnut as the species of choice for everything from fine furniture to doors.
This year it seems there has been a steady increase in demand in walnut. Inquiries from many of our customers in various regions of the world have been on the uptick.
One example of an increase in demand we have noticed has been in the United States. The domestic USA market has been inquiring more regularly for special walnut inventory items such as high end color sorted lumber, lumber with special heartwood specs such as 90/70 and 90/90, and even walnut graded on oak rules as they look for walnut with more potential clear cuttings, less defects and better yields.
One of the interesting developments we have seen is the steady increase in demand for 1 common and 2 common walnut. This is predominately from increased inquiries from our export markets including Eastern Europe, the Middle East and SE Asia. From what we can tell the increase in demand for common grade material is due to a general design trend towards walnut products overall. Walnut flooring and furniture still has a great consumer appeal and is regularly sought after by manufacturers overseas for their own consumer markets of re-export back to the United States.
However, in North America walnut lumber demand from manufacturers seems to be in forms of products that better match their production methods. Manufacturers are looking for lumber that increases their lumber yields, especially when using a raw material as expensive as walnut.
Many recent customer inquiries have been walnut strips in widths ranging from 4.0”- 4.5” and 5.0”- 6.0”. We have also seen a recent willingness for certain manufacturers to accept shorts, (6’ only or 7’ only) walnut length sorts.
Fortunately, we have been able to meet the increasing demand. Our supply sources through the mid-western States have worked with us to source more green lumber and we have been able to increase our kiln drying capabilities in several of our facilities.
So if you are looking for high quality North American Black Walnut please give us a call. We would be happy to be a resource for you!