Canfor announced Thursday it will be indefinitely closing its sawmill in Mackenzie and permanently cutting one shift at its Isle Pierre sawmill.
The Mackenzie closure is effective immediately while the shift elimination at Isle Pierre will effective September 20.
The indefinite curtailment at Mackenzie is due to the high cost of fibre, continued poor lumber markets and challenging operating conditions that have combined to make the mill uneconomic under these conditions, according to a company news release.
The shift elimination at Isle Pierre is due to insufficient timber supply as a result of the mountain pine beetle epidemic and associated decline in the annual allowable cut, according to Canfor. It will enable the mill to better align its production capacity with the sustainable fibre supply in the region.
“We deeply regret the impacts that these capacity reductions will have on our Mackenzie and Isle Pierre employees, contractors, their families and the local communities,” said Stephen Mackie, Senior Vice President of Canadian Operations, Canfor. “The BC forest industry is continuing to face very significant challenges. None of our temporary or permanent curtailment decisions have been made lightly, nor are they a reflection on the hard work and dedication of our employees.”
In combination, these curtailments will reduce Canfor’s annual production output by approximately 400 million board feet, which is in addition to previously announced reductions.