Canfor extends production cutbacks

More downtime scheduled for July and August

Canfor is extending its production cutbacks as supply chain challenges continue. (File photo)

Canfor is extending its production cutbacks as supply chain challenges continue. (File photo)

Canfor’s sawmill here, its Plateau operation outside of Vanderhoof and its other mills in Western Canada will continue to close one day a week, the company announced May 26.

The every-Friday closure here has been going on since the first week of April, sparked by the company’s challenge in dealing with supply chain challenges.

“The global supply challenges are continuing to significantly limit our ability to transport products to our customers and our inventory levels remain very high,” said Canfor president and chief executive officer Don Kayne of the decision to continue with partial shut downs.

“We are working to bring our inventory levels back into balance by reducing our production, while also working to meet the needs of our customers.”

In addition, Canfor’s mills will close for varying lengths of time over July and August which works out to a full closure here July 25 to July 29 and from August 29 to September 2.

The Plateau mill will be closed for one week only, from August 1 to 5.

“[This] will help align production capacity with the sustainable timber supply and transportation availability. The company will use this downtime to complete maintenance projects and other site activities to help mitigate the impact on employees,” the May 26 release stated.

The closures are expected to take 275 million board feet of lumber potential out of production in addition to the 100 million board feet reduction announced for April onward.

Canfor did say it expects its mills to resume what it terms as normal operating schedules following their respective summer downtime.

“The company will continue to assess and make adjustments to operating schedules as supply chain conditions evolve,” the release indicated.

This is the fourth year now that Canfor has either cut production by one day a week or closed completely for periods of time at all or some of its sawmills.

Partial or extended closures took place in 2018 and extended in 2019 after Canfor began citing high operating costs compared to other parts of North America.