CASTLE CREEK, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Our latest installment of the Food and Farm Showcase profiles a multi-generational business that helps to turn forests into cabinets, furniture and pianos.

A.D. Bowman and Son Lumber Company is a wholesale hardwood saw mill and pallet shop.

It was started nearly a century ago by Arthur Delbert Bowman, a dairy farmer who cut hemlock trees for building barns.

Today, his great-grandsons Adam and Aaron Bowman run the company with a focus solely on harvesting hardwoods such as oak, cherry, maple, ash, birch and hickory from private landowners

Adam says the mature trees are chosen in a manner that encourages natural growth.

“We select the trees that are mature, and that need to be removed for the future growth of the woodlot. Typically, if done properly, with selective harvesting we can go back in 10 to 15 years and just keep repeating that cycle,” he says.

Bowman says his company is the first step in the process of turning trees into consumer goods.

Dealing exclusively in green lumber, they sell the timber to businesses like Tioga Hardwoods in Berkshire or R.J. Williams in Apalachin for drying and processing.

Most of the wood is used by cabinet and furniture makers, although A.D. Bowman has a contract with Yamaha Piano to sell wood that has been cut to its specifications.

Bowman also sells its byproducts such as chips that are turned into wood stove pellets or paper products.

“There is nothing that is not used from start to finish in this industry. There’s no waste. Everything from the sawdust to the chips to the mulch, there’s nothing that just gets burned. There’s nothing that gets dumped. Everything is used from start to finish and it’s 100% naturally renewable”

In the 1980’s, A.D. Bowman started building pallets, most of which are sold to Corning Incorporated and other regional companies.

Bowman says the operation relies on repeat business and they take pride in leaving the woods they’ve harvested looking good.

He says the company focuses on woodlots of between 50 and 200 acres.

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