Growth in wood production, including a 17 percent boost in I-joist manufacturing, expected as economy and housing continue to improve.

The small but positive uptick in the economy and residential construction closed 2012 on an optimistic note for the first time since the recession began, and that slow-but-steady growth is expected to continue through 2013. With indicators pointing to rising housing starts through the year and into 2014, APA-The Engineered Wood Association predicts a second straight year of growth in all four of the wood product sectors it represents.

“Last year saw across-the-board increases in structural panels, I-joists, glulam, and LVL. In 2013, not only will that trend continue, but at a slightly faster pace in most cases,” said Craig Adair, APA’s market research director. “Residential construction will drive much of that growth, with pent-up demand for housing, moderately rising house prices, and growing consumer confidence having the most influence.”