Maine is one of the major producers of timber and forest products — a University of Maine study estimated that pre-pandemic, Maine’s industry was tied to 32,000 jobs . But since the pandemic, demand for lumber has gone down, and so have the prices. This is causing many to leave the industry in search of different jobs, and could have a major effect on the consumer when it comes to building or repairing homes. The University of Maine study found the state’s logging industry supported fewer jobs and generated less economic output and labor income in 2021 compared to the five years prior. The study shows that Maine itself generated $582 million in economic output compared to $619 million in 2017. Dana Doran is the executive director of the Professional Logging Contractors of Maine. He says the volatile conditions have led to contractors leaving the industry.