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Importing Exotic Wood

2059 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  EarlS
Hello All,

I have a unique opportunity to import large slabs of exotic wood from Central America. Being that this is my first trip and hopefully first of many, I am trying to figure out the best return on investment from the species available to have the best possible start before I jump into other varieties and cuts. When speaking to craftsmen and high-end furniture designers, everyone has a different preference when choosing wood. For all intensive purposes, everything below relates to live edge and any advice would be greatly appreciated.

1. What is the value of Peruvian/Tropical Walnut vs all American species in the US? When doing a search for Peruvian/Tropical Walnut there are not many results compared to American species which are fairly expensive when talking about 100+ board feet. Is there a demand for live edge Peruvian/Tropical Walnut slabs and can I feel comfortable selling them for American Walnut prices or can they fetch more or less?

2. What is the value of Honduran Mahogany in the US? I was told that live edge for Honduran Mahogany is not as desirable as walnut; is that the case? What is the best use and/or best cut to import Honduran Mahogany?

3. There is a slight possibility, through certain connections via government sanctioned and licensed to cut farmers, that if a tree like any type of Rosewood/Cocobolo falls, we may get our hand on it. Assuming that all documents proving that the tree was in fact not cut but has fallen by natural causes are accounted for, is it worth trying to import into the US?

4. Of the species below, can you please place them in the order of most valuable/desirable in the US market.
Please feel free to make any corrections/adjustment where needed.

English Name - Spanish Name - Scientific Name
1. Spanish Cedar - Cedro - Cedrela odorata
2. Oak - Roble - Quercus lobata
3. Chiva Cherry Wood - Cerezo
4. Walnut, Tropical Walnut, Peruvian Walnut - Nogal - Juglans neotropica
5. Honduran Mahogany or Big-Leaf Mahogany - Coaba - Swietenia Macrophylla
6. Macacauba, Cristobal, Coyote, Macawood, Amazon Rosewood, Nambar, Trebol, Guayacan - Granadillo - Platymiscium spp.
7. Elephant Ear Tree, Caro Caro, Rain Tree - Guanacaste, Parota - Enterolobium Cyclocarpum
8. Honduran Rosewood - Palisandro de Honduras, Rosul - Dalbergia stevensonii
9. Rosewood - Palisandro or Palo Violeta - Dalbergia Cearensis
10. Rosewood Family - Cocobolo - Dalbergia Retusa

This is a lot of information and I may be asking too much but I thank you for any help.
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Check the prices at places like Hearne Hardwoods or Bell Forest Products. They are some of the bigger domestic sellers of exotic woods.
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