HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Mississippi's Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce spoke to a gathering of tree farmers, loggers and local lawmakers in Hattiesburg this week. Cindy Hyde-Smith attended the annual Membership Meeting and Awards Banquet for the Forrest-Lamar County Forestry Association.
She says Mississippians should remember how important forestry is to the state's economy.
"It's my opinion when we draw new business into the state, it's going to be because of our wood basket and our forest products inventory," said Hyde-Smith. "One out of every four jobs in Mississippi is related to agriculture. People don't realize that it's a $7 billion industry and timber and forestry is such a large part of that," she said.
Among the awards presented was Outstanding Tree Farmer of the Year, which went to Tom and Jeanette Price.