July 19, 2018 - Canadian youth are being encouraged to find and keep green jobs with a number of paid positions being offered over the next year.
July 18, 2018 - An audit of forestry activities on seven woodlots, in the Nadina Natural Resource District, has found all seven had some type of non-compliance with the Forest and Range Practices Act and/or the Wildfire Act, according to the audit reports.“The auditors found that woodlot licensees did not meet obligations related to reforesting previously logged sites on three woodlots, and did not meet requirements for reporting their activities to government on four woodlots,” said Bruce Larson, vice-chair, Forest Practices Board.On three woodlots, the licensees did not meet requirements for preparing fire-hazard assessments, although they did abate fire hazards by piling and burning logging debris. One woodlot licensee neither assessed nor abated fire hazards, and failed to meet the requirements of the Wildfire Act.“Assessing fire hazard is a legal requirement, and must be completed at required intervals after harvest has started,” said Larson. “Any identified hazards must be abated to reduce the risks of a forest fire starting or spreading.”The audit found that all of the woodlot licensees met requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act for operational planning and timber harvesting, as well as road and bridge construction and maintenance. All activities carried out between October 2015 and October 2017 were examined.The board audited a total of 11 woodlots in the district. Reports on the results for the other four woodlots can be found on the board’s website.The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government. The board audits forest and range practices on public lands and appropriateness of government enforcement. It can also make recommendations for improvement to practices and legislation.
July 17, 2018 - To maintain the health and diversity of the forest ecosystem, it is all about balancing the good and the bad. Prescribed fires act as a valuable resource management tool for enhancing ecological conditions and eliminating excessive fuel buildup. However, wildfires do occur — ignited by lightning strikes or caused by human activities usually related to carelessness.
July 17, 2018 - The Forest Practices Board will examine the activities of Western Forest Products Inc. on tree farm licence 39, in the Campbell River Natural Resource District, during the week of July 23, 2018.Auditors will examine whether harvesting, roads, silviculture, fire protection and associated planning, carried out between July 1, 2017, and July 27, 2018, met the requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act and the Wildfire Act.Tree farm licence 39 is made up of four geographical areas called blocks. This audit will examine activities in blocks 2 and 5. Block 2 is located northwest of Campbell River, near the community of Sayward, and Block 5 is located about 65 kilometres north of Campbell River, on the mainland coast.In the past year, Western Forest Products Inc. has harvested approximately one million cubic metres of timber from Block 2. While there has been no recent harvesting in Block 5, auditors will examine roads and silviculture.Once the audit work is complete, a report will be prepared, and any party that may be adversely affected by the audit findings will have a chance to respond. The board’s final report and recommendations then will be released to the public and government.The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government. The board audits forest and range practices on public land, as well as appropriateness of government enforcement.
July 12, 2018 - The Brawler Solidflex HPS solid tire line, from Trelleborg Wheel Systems, has been selected as the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) solid tire option for Cat medium wheel loaders and small wheel loaders from Caterpillar Inc. Caterpillar is a leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives.“The team at Caterpillar, as well as our other customers, have long understood the value of our Brawler line to their businesses," said Jared Steier, director of OEM/OEA sales in North America for Trelleborg’s industrial and construction tires. "Engineered for extreme environments, Brawler tires provide the optimal total cost of ownership for which Trelleborg is known. Caterpillar’s choice of the Brawler Solidflex HPS tire as its OEM solid tire option on its wheel loaders is right in line with their tradition of providing the best business-driving value to their customers.” The Brawler HPS Solidflex features elliptical apertures to deliver a comfortable ride, resulting in reduced equipment and operator fatigue. Durable cut resistant rubber compound eliminates downtime caused by tire damage, while deep lug tread design offers three times more wearable rubber than most pneumatic tires.
July 6, 2018 - The Forest Practices Board has released its 2017-18 annual report, which summarizes the board’s work over the past fiscal year and highlights its current projects.During the year, the board published 18 reports: eight complaint investigations, six audits, two special reports and one special investigation. Part of the board’s role is to receive concerns from the public about matters pertaining to the Forest and Range Practices Act and the Wildfire Act. This year, the board received 83 concerns, eight of which are now complaints under investigation.A variety of topics were reported on this year, including the management of at-risk plant communities, grizzly bear habitat, and biodiversity at the landscape level. Other examples include potential impacts from forestry on water quality and supply, road construction on steep slopes and the efficacy of government initiatives.The annual report also highlights responses from both government and industry to recommendations made by the board in reports published in the past couple of years.The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government. The board audits forest and range practices on public lands and appropriateness of government enforcement. It can also make recommendations for improvement to practices and legislation.Read the full report here.
July 5, 2018 - Nokian Tractor King was presented for the first time in public at Euroforest 2018, along with Nokian Tyres complete range of forestry tires. As a culmination of long experience and intense development process, at Euroforest 2018 Nokian Tyres presents many cutting-edge innovations that help professionals to get the most out of their CTL machines, skidders and tractors. Revolutionary from surface to core Nokian Tractor King features radical new thinking in tractor tire technology. It was designed for a reason: there is a growing demand in forestry, road maintenance and earthmoving for a strong tire that combines supreme traction with premium on-road qualities. Usually increasing traction of the tire means losing some of the driving comfort."Having a team with so much experience and so much passion about what we do gave us the opportunity to innovate and create a new kind of tire without sacrificing one or the other key quality," said Caleb Claassen, Nokian Heavy Tyres designer. The durability, wear-resistance and environmentally friendly production process of the new Nokian Tractor King make it a sustainable choice for modern forestry, giving the driver peace of mind in all conditions. Innovations for daily work With over 120 years of experience, Nokian Tyres makes forestry work all over the world safer and more sustainable. From game-changing ideas to the tested and trusted products, in the very core of Nokian Heavy Tyres business is knowing the world where tires operate in. Driven by real life, Nokian Tyres constantly aims to exceed all previous achievements. So, at the end of the day, the work gets done safely and efficiently. Technology and service leadership come from experience and innovation, from deeply valuing the daily work. Presented at Euroforest 2018 by Nokian Tyres: Foresty Broad selection of premium and replacement tires for CTL machines, skidders and forestry tractors Agriculture Nokian Hakkapeliitta TRI for tractors and Nokian CT flotation tires for trailers Trucks and buses New Nokian E-Truck Trailer designed for Central European medium and regional haul transport, and premium all-season drive axle tire Nokian Hakka Truck Drive Passenger cars SUV/ 4x4 summer tires Nokian Rockproof and Nokian Rotiiva AT
July 4, 2018 - The Forest Practices Board will examine the activities of A&A Trading Ltd. (A&A) and Terminal Forest Products Ltd. (Terminal) on forest licence A19229, in the Sunshine Coast Natural Resource District, during the week of July 9, 2018.Auditors will examine whether harvesting, roads, silviculture, fire protection and associated planning, carried out by A&A and Terminal between July 1, 2016, and July 13, 2018, met the requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act and the Wildfire Act.The audit area is located near Sechelt and Powell River, in the Sunshine Coast Timber Supply Area (TSA). Forest licence A19229 has an allowable annual cut of 125,966 cubic metres per year, and is located on rugged and remote terrain, accessible only by helicopter and boat. The TSA is home to several species at risk, including the marbled murrelet and the northern goshawk.Once the audit work is complete, a report will be prepared, and any party that may be adversely affected by the audit findings will have a chance to respond. The board’s final report and recommendations then will be released to the public and government.The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government. The board audits forest and range practices on public land, as well as appropriateness of government enforcement.
July 3, 2018 - A stretch of boreal forest along the Manitoba-Ontario border has been declared a UNESCO world heritage site. Pimachiowin Aki (“The Land That Gives Life”) is a forest landscape crossed by rivers and studded with lakes, wetlands, and boreal forest. It forms part of the ancestral home of the Anishinaabeg, an indigenous people living from fishing, hunting and gathering. The area encompasses the traditional lands of four Anishinaabeg communities (Bloodvein River, Little Grand Rapids, Pauingassi and Poplar River). It is an exceptional example of the cultural tradition of Ji-ganawendamang Gidakiiminaan (“keeping the land”), UNESCO stated, which consists of honouring the gifts of the Creator, respecting all forms of life and maintaining harmonious relations with others. A complex network of livelihood sites, habitation sites, travel routes and ceremonial sites, often linked by waterways, embodies this tradition.
June 28, 2018 - Forest sector contractors in British Columbia are a shrinking breed. The industry has contracted in so many ways but one could argue the most impacted in the supply chain is logging contractors. Contractors are getting larger, owners are aging, and average margins are poor. Risks are increasing while the reward is decreasing. The result is fewer logging contractors. Those left are being asked to do more, and will have to do more. This spring we have seen the impact of the reduction of logging contractors and the risks associated with operating on the land base. Even with a longer than normal winter harvesting season and the use of satellite yards to lengthen the hauling season, we are seeing sawmills at risk of production shutdowns because of log shortages. The trees are on the land base but there is not enough capacity to harvest, process, and transport logs to sawmills within the seasonal opportunities. This shortage exists because logging contractors are not generating a sufficient return to be sustainable, recruit and train new staff, or invest in innovation. Over the last few years, TimberTracks has been analyzing logging contractor accountant prepared year-end financial statements to understand the situation of the industry supply chain. We underwent a robust third-party verification process to ensure our analysis and sample is representative of the industry. The results were worrisome. There are two types of capacity challenges for the supply chain. The first is labour. The workforce is aging and forestry is not generally considered an attractive vocation for younger people. The days are long, the risks are high, and the compensation is not as good as historically found in other mechanized industries such as mining and oil and gas. The collective industry needs to assess its image and how it attracts young people to careers in forestry. The second capacity challenge is return on capital. Without getting into the specific details, the evidence indicated that logging contractors are financially underperforming the requirements of their capital-intensive industry. The reasons for underperformance are myriad and beyond the scope of this column. How the industry arrived here is not important. What is important is how we move forward to make sure that the supply chain is sustainable. If we look to other capital-intensive industries we see that supply and demand principles are evident. When demand is high and supply is low, prices rise. When supply is high and demand is low, prices sink. The forest industry has gone through cycles of high supply and high demand of harvesting capacity but return on capital has experienced a long, slow downward trend regardless of contractor demand and supply. The low return on capital has resulted in a supply chain that is an unattractive place to invest capital. Owners of logging contractors are aging and need to have succession plans. Many multi-generational transfers are occurring, but usually rely heavily on the older generation taking most, if not all, of the risk of funding the transition. Succession plans to employees or unrelated third-parties are becoming almost unheard of. These businesses are worth more in a complete dispersal than they are as a going concern. Is it any wonder that contractor capacity is shrinking? The long-term solution to supply chain sustainability is creating an attractive investment environment for capital. We are often asked about the proper return on capital for logging contractors. The answer to that question is really dependent on the returns of realistic alternate investments with a risk adjustment based on the circumstances. Contractors are usually financially dependent on, at most, a few customers and that has concentration risk. They also almost exclusively depend on the fortunes of lumber prices. Investment in a logging contractor would need to yield a return risk adjusted higher than could be experienced in a diversified investment such as a public stock market index which usually made up of large corporate enterprises with broad industry, geographic, and product offering diversification. As we look to the future of forest sector contractors, we have to understand how we manage the long-term sustainability to attract capital and young people to the business. The inability to generate proper returns on capital will invite capital to invest in other industries. It would be a shame if the Canadian forest industry ground to a halt, not because of market demand or wood supply, but because no one was left to harvest and transport logs to sawmills.Aaron Sinclair, MBA, is the president of Timber Tracks Inc., based in Prince George, B.C.
June 28, 2018 - At the Sustainable Forestry Initiative, we believe forests are the answer to many of our local, national and global challenges.
June 28, 2018 - Domtar has released its 2018 Sustainability Update, highlighting the company’s ongoing efforts to take a longer-term view of creating and preserving value for shareholders, customers, employees and communities. In an update to its 2017 report, Domtar announced that the company has met or exceeded three of the company’s six 2020 sustainability goals this year.“At Domtar, everyone has a role in sustainability because it is how we do business every day,” explained John D. Williams, Domtar’s president and CEO. “Sustainability is an integral part of our long-term growth strategy, which is exactly why we have been able to meet or surpass half of our 2020 sustainability goals already in 2018 — and why we are well on track to achieve the remaining.”Highlighted in the 2018 update, Domtar’s commitment to integrating sustainability into its long-term growth strategy resulted in key accomplishments across the company’s 2020 goals, including: An 18 per cent reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions since 2010, surpassing Domtar’s 2020 goal of 15 per cent. Domtar’s 2020 goal has been to reduce total direct and indirect greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from purchased energy at pulp and paper mills 15 per cent by 2020 from 2010 levels. Fuel switching of six power boilers from coal to natural gas over the past few years provided the majority of reductions. Completion of a water-cost model for Domtar’s pulp and paper mills ahead of 2020 schedule. The 2020 goal to develop a model for the company’s pulp and paper mills to measure and more strategically manage the full cost of using water was achieved this year. The model was informed by conducting pilot studies at five mills over the past two years to incorporate unique, site-specific water conditions. Domtar plans to begin operationalizing the full cost of water into its business decisions and conducting additional water-cost assessments at other mills in 2018. An increase in the level of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified fibre procured for Domtar pulp and paper mills to 22 per cent of total fibre use, exceeding the company’s 2020 goal of 20 per cent. Domtar remains committed to lowering the technical and financial hurdles to increasing forest certification in its wood procurement regions. The 2018 Sustainability Update also demonstrated how the company is on track to achieve its remaining 2020 goals, making notable progress in key areas, including: Reduction of Domtar’s recordable safety incident rate to 0.78, the company’s best year on record — and a 55 per cent reduction since 2008. The company is working toward achieving its 2020 goal to reduce its recordable safety incident rate to 0.50 by increasing focus and efforts on prevention of serious injuries and eliminating non-core, high-hazard tasks where possible. Expansion of Domtar’s EarthChoice Ambassador (ECA) program to 76 per cent of company facilities. As of 2018, Domtar has established ECA teams in 26 locations across four countries, bringing the company closer to its goal of engaging employees in sustainability through our ECA program in every facility by 2020. Reduction of total waste sent to landfills from pulp and paper mills by 36 per cent since 2013, approaching the 2020 goal of 40 per cent reduction from 2013 levels. Progress on reducing the amount of materials our mills send to landfills is the result of source reduction initiatives and new and expanded beneficial use programs. For more details on Domtar’s sustainability performance metrics and trends, click here.“At Domtar, our investment in sustainability is rooted in responsibility, efficiency and engagement,” said Paige Goff, Domtar's vice-president of sustainability. “Our commitment to sustainability enables us to inspire our employees, reduce risks, enhance brand reputation, drive business success and grow shareholder value.”To learn more about how responsibility, efficiency and engagement drive Domtar’s overall sustainability investments and initiatives, click here.As an accompaniment to its 2018 Sustainability Update, Domtar also created a brief video that illustrates the company’s commitment to sustainability. While corporate sustainability reports are traditionally complex, Domtar’s latest video brings the company’s 2020 sustainability journey to life, helping make a technical subject more accessible — and inspiring — to all audiences.Domtar makes a wide variety of everyday products from sustainable wood fiber, and is one of the world’s largest producers of a complete line of absorbent hygiene solutions and an innovator in absorbent technology. With approximately 10,000 employees serving more than 50 countries around the world, Domtar is driven by a commitment to turn sustainable wood fibre into useful products that people rely on every day.
July 19, 2018 - USNR has designed a new all-electric Stick-N-Stacker (Lunden style) that boasts many advanced features. You can take advantage of the newer technology through upgrades to your existing stacker.The Rake Off Assembly upgrade converts your system from hydraulic to electric, achieving a smooth operation up to 20 cycles per minute while maintaining ability to retract forks, even if boards are out of position, without damaging the Rake Off. Wide target design with breakaway pins prevents damage when contacting broken boards Target closely follows the fork taper and pan contour preventing stick rake back issues “Safe zero potential” prevents Rake Off from falling even with broken chains! Removes rack and spur gears (formerly for equalization) Click here to watch it in action.USNR is continually making upgrades available for our existing systems as technology advances. For more upgrade options, click here.
July 18, 2018 - Are you a manufacturer or researcher in the sawmill industry offering an innovative optimization or automation option that can help modern sawmill operations succeed? Send us your proposal to present at OptiSaw.
July 18, 2018 - Sennebogen has introduced the new 855 E model to its line-up of material handlers to complete the largest product line of purpose-built material handlers worldwide.
July 4, 2018 - Carbotech is proud to announce the creation of a strategic partnership with West Coast Industrial Systems for the exclusive distribution of its equipment and after-sale maintenance service, Carbocare, for the West Coast of the United States. Based in Lebanon, Ore., WCIS’s fabrication shop and warehouse will serve as a critical spare parts distribution location, drastically decreasing time-to-market and related product costs for Carbotech/Gemofor’s existing clientele. Over the years, Carbotech has built a solid reputation for itself in the planer mill and sawmill industries thanks to quality products and customer service. Blane Belveal, vice-president of sales for WCIS, is extremely confident that the newly built partnership will uphold the two companies’ commitment to quality and continue to grow their reputation across the West Coast of the United States. "Our goal is not only to sell lumber manufacturing equipment, but really to be an integrated partner with lumber producers. Having local sales representatives as well as installation and maintenance technicians is essential for us to be able to serve our clientele with the best before, during and after-sales service," says Mathieu Laflamme, international sales and marketing director at Carbotech.
July 3, 2018 - A partnership between three Ontario First Nations reached an agreement to re-open Nakina sawmill, which had been shut down for a decade.The Agoke Lumber Limited Partnership, (which consists of Aroland, Eabametoong and Marten Falls First Nations) and Nakina Lumber Inc. signed the deal on Friday.Agoke partnership president Mark Bell said the decision will provide more employment opportunities and provide another revenue stream for First Nation communities. "This [joint venture] agreement is part of an overarching Agoke strategy that will help us continue to ensure that local forest resources are protected, managed and developed for the mutual benefit of our First Nation partners and peoples," Bell said in a statement.Read the full story here.
June 26, 2018 - Biewer Lumber in Prentice, Wisconsin is updating its Edger, Trimmer and WinTally systems to the latest USNR software and hardware release. This investment will ensure the reliability, competitiveness and supportability of its sawmill edger, trimmer and sorter processes at this site.The new technology will improve recovery and increase uptime with simplified calibrations, improved diagnostics, and supportable hardware and software. Proven algorithms provide the most valuable cut solution, using input from the mill user, measurements from the sensors, and available operator inputs.Biewer is based in St. Clair, Mich., and operates five lumber operations in Wisconsin, Michigan and Mississippi.
June 22, 2018 - Dust Safety Week is coming to a close after five days of coverage on dust safety best practices, technical information and solutions to help pellet plants and sawmills keep their operations and operators safe.Our video this year highlights the importance of learning from each other’s experiences through sharing stories. Fornebu Lumber’s safety and training co-ordinator Christian Fournier describes an incident where two fires were both ignited and safely put out in one day. “We were very lucky that our staff acted very quickly and safely in order to contain the fire from spreading,” Fournier said.Fournier said he chose to share this experience with others, including Fornebu Lumber’s corrective actions following the incident, to prevent this type of situation from occurring elsewhere. You can also find more details about the incident in Fournier’s article published this week.Among our other main stories, you can also read about preventing a dust collector inlet explosion by regular CFI contributor and dust mitigation expert John Bachynski.Fike’s Jef Snoeys, Jeff Mycroft, and Dave Buchanan outline concerns that arise from dust created during the processing of wood biomass, and best practices in the industry to mitigate those concerns. And don’t miss the six questions to ask when choosing a dust collection system contractor by the VETS Group’s Erin Rayner.Find those stories and much more from our archives on the Dust Safety Week 2018 landing page, which will continue to be a hub for the industry to learn best practices and find the latest information on dust safety and mitigation.Content on our landing page will be hosted there for the next year for readers to reference.Thank you to our sponsors and safety partners VETS and Fike:
June 21, 2018 - A dust collection system is an integral part of a facility and needs to be maintained and updated properly. The knowledge of the team in charge of keeping this vital system in tip top shape is also critical. This is especially because, as per NFPA 664, the owner has a responsibility to ensure that the facility and the combustible dust system are designed, installed and maintained properly.
June 20, 2018 - Almost 20 years after its introduction on the market, Gilbert’s planer is a huge success for the company as the 100th unit has been sold to the company Katerra, in the U.S. Gilbert's products team has developed a unique expertise in designing planermill equipment. Sold in nearly 10 countries including Canada, the United States, Germany, New Zealand, Denmark, Brazil, Australia and Sweden, the Gilbert planers are known to be the fastest in the world and have the highest efficiency rate due to the unique-to-gilbert pull-through technology. “Our planer equipment makes us very proud. With our five different models, we want to offer our clients first-rate equipment helping them increase their productivity while producing a beautiful lumber finish," said Heidi Danbrook, sales manager of the planermill division. "To have sold 100 planers is a great sign of confidence given by the industry." For the upcoming years, Gilbert is devoted to continue being the leader in the planer industry by producing high quality equipment tailored to meet mill needs. Its after-sales team is dedicated to offering personalized service and support to all its customers worldwide. For over 30 years, Gilbert has been a leader in the design and manufacturing of forestry, planermill, construction equipment and snow groomers. The company, located in Roberval, Que., and employs nearly 100 workers dedicated to offering the best planer technology on the market.
June 19, 2018 - Dust collectors containing combustible material are required to have an explosion backflow preventor installed on the main inlet duct to prevent an explosion occuring inside the dust collector from travelling back into the building.
June 19, 2018 - The Wood Products Safety Summit 2018 held in Prince George, B.C., on June 6 offered more than 50 delegates a day of diverse presentations on safety – with a clear focus on the value of both increased collaboration and process safety. Manufacturing Advisory Group (MAG) member and Conifex’s safety manager, Darren Beattie, provided an update on B.C.’s new Forest Industry Forum, on behalf of MAG. He said that the new Forest Industry Forum was a model that allowed for an all-inclusive consultative and collaborative forum between industry, the regulator and labour, with one shared focus: to bring about the best solutions for improved safety outcomes.[This article is part of our 2018 Dust Safety Week coverage. Find more articles here.]Darren shared how the latest forum had come about, going back to the 2012 Lakeland and Babine sawmill explosions; subsequent fatality inquests; and then the Macatee Report.While industry has previously worked with the regulator on safety matters, things had come to a point that there needed to be a process for consultation and collaboration with industry, labour, and the regulator on safety issues. He said the initial forums had become less effective over time because the structure and format of those forums was not designed for collaboration. As a result, he and Matt Franks, another MAG member and Canfor’s safety manager, had been charged by MAG to consult with WorkSafeBC on a process to address a need for sustained collaboration that would allow the building of a strong working relationship between industry, the regulator and labour to fully address emerging issues, risk reduction and compliance.With better communications, collaboration and shared commitment between the three groups to solve challenges, they have developed a more efficient and effective process built on broad, qualified stakeholder input and engagement that they all believe will lead to improved safety standards and performance.The framework has evolved away from looking at areas of concern to forming technical working groups – manufacturing and harvesting working groups. Both MAG and the Wood Pellet Association of Canada (WPAC) feed into the technical manufacturing working group.While the groups meet quarterly, they communicate constantly on current and emerging issues.Darren explained that the participants on the manufacturing side included safety leaders from industry, labour, WorkSafeBC and the BC Forest Safety Council; and that there was equal representation on the harvesting side as well.In regards to harvesting, the focus is on addressing fatigue, load securement, self-loading truck guarding and phase congestion. On the manufacturing side, the focus is on the Part 12 regulation section review on safeguarding and the conflict between lockout and safeguarding, high risk strategy updates and wood fibre storage.Darren said the safeguarding technological advancement initiative, undertaken at Conifex, and supported by MAG and WorkSafeBC, had identified conflict within the regulation. The ultimate goal is to enable regulation to be formulated and implemented properly, which requires input, consultation and shared understanding in the early phases of testing and implementation. “There is an opportunity for industry to give input very early on in the process which is very important,” said Darren.Meetings have been scheduled for the rest of 2018 including planning for the annual forestry summit as well as a part 12 review of regulations re safeguarding.“We have one goal,” said Darren. “We are not there to lobby for any specific interests. We are there to find ways to achieve safer outcomes that see everyone go home safe.” Read more about the Wood Products Safety Summit here.
June 19, 2018 - The LASAR sensor-based USNR Carriage Optimization utilizes dense 3D scan data to yield maximum value from every log.Simultaneous front and back side scanning offers unparalleled accuracy and data density. It is the only system capable of full log breakdown grade sawing and can also be configured for MOF (minimum opening face) in hardwood applications.The system's detailed breakdown rules can be set for each species, grade and fiber class along with other options like configurable face cut orders, configurable minimum opening face sizes and lengths, half taper, full taper, and no taper options.Click to watch an animation of its operation.
July 12, 2018 - Building an ultra-energy efficient industrial-style building in a northern climate is no easy task, but the Wood Innovation Research Laboratory (WIRL) stands as proof it can be done.Home to researchers seeking to discover novel materials and techniques for the next generation of tall wood buildings, the laboratory is itself an engineering marvel. It is a certified Passive House, the first building of its type in North America to exceed the exacting international standard.“We pulled off something really amazing here,” says UNBC associate professor of engineering Dr. Guido Wimmers. “This building has caught the attention of Passive House researchers around the world because it demonstrates how an industrial structure, constructed with wood, in Northern British Columbia’s cold climate can be a global leader in energy efficiency.”Certified Passive House buildings use up to 90 per cent less energy for heating and cooling when compared with standard buildings and use up to 70 per cent less energy overall.As the building owner, UNBC provided in-house expertise on the Passive House requirement and shared ideas on how to develop design and building solutions with the architectural, engineering and construction teams. Wimmers, and others in the Master of Engineering in Integrated Wood Design program, worked closely with the contractors throughout the design and construction phase of the project.“At UNBC, we have a lot of expertise in building science, the materials the go into Passive House buildings and how we operate our buildings,” says UNBC assistant director of facilities Dr. David Claus. “We’ve been able to put that all into practice on this project.”That expertise, combined with the dedication to detail from all the project partners, resulted in impressive results.WIRL set a new standard for air tightness, securing the best North American result of any building using the internationally recognized passive house standard. The testing protocol involves both pressurizing and depressurizing the building and measuring the number of air changes per hour that result. With a score of 0.07, WIRL surpassed the Passive House requirement by nearly a factor of 10.The result is all the more impressive given the design requirements of the building. With a large bay door installed to facilitate the delivery of materials and a state-of-the-art dust extraction system required, there is a lot of potential for air leakage.“The biggest challenge was the large overhead door,” Wimmers explains. “It is very difficult to find a manufacturer who can deliver a well-insulated and air-tight product.”The big red door was sourced from Germany and the other doors and windows hail from Poland. European parts were required for those aspects of the building because Passive House manufacturing is still in its early stages in Canada.Other components of the building were locally sourced, including the trusses used vertically in the design of the thick exterior walls.“Using trusses as a vertical component is something unique,” Wimmers says. “I have been working in Passive Houses for more than 15 years and I have not seen any kind of technical system like this before.”The 50-cm wide walls are rated R-80 and contain blown in mineral wool insulation. The roof is rated R-100 and required special certification from the Roofing Contractors Association of British Columba. Even the floor sits atop 20 cm of expanded polystyrene insulation.“The entire envelope needs to be really well insulated,” Wimmers explains. “Everything has to be nicely wrapped with a warm blanket.”Even with the air-tight design and extra insulation, the building also needs to be breathable so that any moisture that may accumulate is not trapped inside. Wimmers and Master of Engineering program graduate Stephanie Wall produced a comparative life-cycle assessment, looking at the wood-based Passive House design of WIRL and comparing it a wood structure, built to standard building code requirements; a steel structure designed to be a Passive House; and a steel structure built to code.The wood designs contained much less embodied energy — or energy consumed during the production of building materials and the construction itself — compared with the steel buildings. The Passive House buildings use much less energy operationally, and the wood-Passive House design scored the best overall.“A Passive house building outperforms a code building substantially in the long run,” Wimmers says. “It’s about a third of the environmental impact compared to a code building over 60 years.”To further reduce WIRL’s carbon footprint, the University has signed a biogas contract. By using gas recovered from agricultural facilities and landfills, UNBC is able to lessen its reliance on fossil fuels.The Passive House design, combined with the biogas fuel, means the building is expected to produce one per cent of greenhouse gas emissions compared with a conventional building.There’s one more benefit to the Passive House that cannot be quantified.“In Passive House we often talk all about the low energy use,” says Claus. “But because of the ventilation systems, they are also very comfortable to live in.”Learn more about the Wood Innovation Research Lab through the Project Overview produced by naturally:wood.This article was originally published by the University of Northern British Columbia.
June 28, 2018 - Urbanisation is accelerating and creating pressure to increase housing construction. To answer this global challenge, construction needs to be quicker and more ecological. In Metsä Wood's new video, Mikko Saavalainen, senior vice-president of business development, and Juha Kasslin, vice-president of product management, explain what off-site wood construction has to offer.At the moment, construction produces 30 per cent of the world's carbon dioxide emissions, and it is clear that the course must be changed. We need more ecologically sustainable solutions. Wood is the only major construction material that stores carbon. Wood is a renewable material, and when the wooden parts are no longer used in buildings, they can be reused or recycled.Another key factor in urban construction is speed. The construction industry is undergoing a major transition, with construction moving from building sites to off-site manufacturing. Elements and modules are assembled in industrial factory conditions and delivered to building sites for quick installation. The lightness and strength properties of engineered wood products, like Kerto LVL (laminated veneer lumber), make off-site construction a very attractive option.More efficient construction through prefabricationUsing prefabricated wooden elements significantly reduces time spent at the construction site. As most of the construction work is done indoors, there are no delays due to weather conditions. The turnaround time on building sites is shortened as the amount of errors is reduced and work safety is improved.Metsä Wood's cut-to-size Kerto LVL products and optimised element production ensure material efficiency with minimum waste. Kerto LVL products have an excellent strength-to-size ratio, which means less construction material is needed, and therefore traffic to the building site is minimised.Wood elements together with partnersKerto LVL products make construction fast, light and green. Metsä Wood is actively building a partner network to increase off-site manufacturing of Kerto LVL elements for this purpose."The Kerto LVL ecosystem means a network of companies with who we can together develop and grow the use of wood elements in construction," says Laura Mattila, vice-president of sales development at Metsä Wood. "The strength of the ecosystem is based on everybody concentrating on their core competence. The sum of this is more than each party trying to do everything by themselves."Metsä Wood's core competence is to produce Kerto LVL products on an industrial scale. Meanwhile, the element manufacturers carry out a lot of product development based on this versatile raw material.
June 5, 2018 - Freres Lumber’s new $32-million mass plywood panel (MPP) plant in Lyons, Ore., is breaking new ground as it seeks opportunity in the growing mass timber component building movement and market. In doing so, the 20-year panel producer and 59-year veneer supplier is taking advantage of its longtime strengths while moving in a bold new direction.
May 16, 2018 - Canada-based Danzer companies Interforest Ltd. in Durham, Ont., and Interforest Lumber, Inc. in Boucherville, Que., have been trading together under the name Danzer Canada Inc. since May 1.
May 8, 2018 - The University of Toronto is set to build a 14-storey academic tower made of timber on its downtown Toronto campus – expected to be the tallest mass timber and concrete hybrid building in North America.
April 27, 2018 - U.K.-based marketing and consulting firm IndexBox has published a new report called "World: Wood-Based Panels - Market Report. Analysis And Forecast To 2025". Canadian Forest Industries has published key findings of the report below.Global market of wood-based panels softened its growthIn 2016, the wood-based panels market grew to 408M cubic meters. After a slight reduction from 2008 to 2009, the market grew steadily through to 2016, however, the pace of growth decelerated over the last three years. In wholesale prices, the market accounted to $162B. In value terms, the market showed a more pronounced dynamics — it contracted by 15 per cent in 2009 and then recovered over the next two years with further upward trend. However, in 2015, the market dropped slightly and retained this level in the next year.Plywood (155M cubic meters), particle board and OSB (119M cubic meters) and MDF/HDF (97M cubic meters) were the most consumed product categories, together making up 91 per cent of global consumption in 2016. Consumption of veneer sheets (4 per cent), hardboard (3 per cent) and other fibreboard (2 per cent) held small shares in the market.The wood-based panels market is to reach 467M cubic meters by 2025The shifting of potential market opportunities from developed countries to developing ones has been one of the main global trends in the wood based panel market over the last few years. While the economically mature markets of the U.S., Canada, and Western Europe are expected to have a modest pace of housing starts, the fastest growing Asian countries such as China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam are expected to continue growth due to rising urbanization and disposable incomes. The other emerging economies, such as Russia, Brazil, and Eastern Europe appear to have potential of growth, but it is restrained by lack of investments and the shrinking of consumer spending due to an economy slowdown.The world economy is expected to experience fundamental changes, supported by decreasing oil prices, the slowdown of Chinese economy, and the deceleration of the world trade. However, the demand from downstream industries in largest consumer countries is forecast to remain positive, backed up by wide product use, increasing regional integration, and positive conditions for wood-based panel manufacturing. The Asia-Pacific region will remain a key growing market. Despite the slowing pace of construction in China, the expansion of China's economy continues to be significant, similarly to other rapidly-growing countries in the region (including Indonesia and Malaysia). The U.S. is also an important market, with a steady expansion in construction, combined with the stable levels of employment and the rising incomes, leading to an increasing demand for wood-based panels. In general, the global wood-based panel market is expected to continue to grow by +1.5 annually in the medium term which will lead the market size to 467M cubic meters by the end of 2025.Wood-based panels output grew by 45 per cent from the outset levelProduction of wood-based panels reached 410M cubic meters in 2016, with an upward trend over the last seven years. This resulted into an increase of +45 per cent from the outset level. In 2010, global wood-based panels overcame the pre-recession production level of 2007. In value terms, the production flattened at $161B in 2016 after a 7 per cent drop recorded in the previous year; prior to that it increased robustly from 2010-2014.China was a major producer of wood-based panelsChina was the key world wood-based panels producing country with an output of about 204M thousand cubic meters in 2016, which accounted approx. for a half of total global output. The other major producers were the U.S. (eight per cent), Russia (four per cent), Canada (three per cent), Germany (three per cent), Brazil (three per cent), Poland (two per cent) and Turkey (two per cent).In China, production levels increased by +10.4 per cent annually from 2007 to 2016, largely attributed to favorable economic conditions and growth of construction market. The other major producing countries showed mixed dynamics of wood-based panels output in physical terms. In 2007-2016 annual growth rates were especially high in Turkey (+6.5 per cent) and Russia (+4.1 per cent). Germany (-3.7 per cent), Canada (-2.1 per cent) and the U.S. (-1.1 per cent) were major producing countries with an annual decline of wood-based panels output.Approx. 21 per cent of wood-based panels consumption is importedWood-based panels is a widely traded commodity. The share of imports in global consumption stood at 21 per cent in 2016. Despite the fact that the share of imports decreased noticably by seven percentage points over the last nine years, the market is still highly dependent on imports. High trade intensity is determined mainly by the substantial distances between the main centers of wood-based panels manufacturing countries and key consuming countries.Particle board, plywood and MDF together made the vast majority of world exportsParticle board and OSB (29.9M cubic meters) and plywood (29.5M cubic meters) constituted the largest product categories in terms of exports, each comprising 34 per cent of the total exports in 2016. Exports of these products recorded a slight growth in volumes from 2007-2016: the average annual growth rates stood at +0.8 per cent and +1.0 per cent, respectively. MDF/HDF lagged somewhat behind, accounting for a 19 per cent share of total exports and expanding with a CAGR of +1.8 per cent over the same period.China and Canada are the leading suppliers of wood-based panels to global marketIn 2016, the volume of global wood-based panels exports totalled 87.5M cubic meters, expanding robustly from the bottom point of 2009. In 2013, exports recovered from a slump caused by global financial crisis of 2008-2009 and then continued to increase gradually. In value terms, it fluctuated near $34B from 2011 to 2016.China (14.8M cubic meters in 2016) and Canada (8.4M cubic meters) were the main global suppliers of wood-based panels with a combined share of 27 per cent of global exports. Germany, with the share of seven per cent, Malaysia (six per cent), Russia (six per cent), Thailand (five per cent) and France (four per cent) were the other major exporters. From 2007 to 2016, Russia (+9.4 per cent per year) emerged as the fastest growing supplier among the major exporters, followed by Thailand (+4.9 per cent per year) and China (+3.3 per cent per year). Meanwhile, exports from Canada reduced by -1.5 per cent per year over the same period.The U.S. continues to lead the globe in terms of imports of wood-based panelsThe volume of global imports totalled 85.2M thousand cubic meters in 2016. In terms of dynamics, imports were generally in line with exports: these trade flows globally complement each other. In value terms, the total imports stood at $34.9B in 2016, this figure remained relatively stable over the last four years.In 2016, the U.S. (12.9M cubic meters), Germany (5.6M cubic meters), Japan (4.2M cubic meters), China (3.5M cubic meters), Canada (3.4M cubic meters), the UK (3.4M cubic meters) and Italy (2.7M cubic meters) were the leading destinations of wood-based panels imports, together making up 42 per cent of the global imports. Among the major importing countries China (+1.3 per cent per year) gained the highest annual growth rates from 2007 to 2016. Despite a rapid acceleration in 2014-2016, the U.S. imports of wood-based panels still need to grow a bit more to regain its outset level. By contrast, Japan and the U.K. recorded a slight decrease with regard to imports, which contracted by -2.0 per cent per year and -1.1 per cent per year, respectively, from 2007-2016. In the other countries, imports remained relatively stable throughout the analyzed period.The full report can be accessed here.
April 25, 2018 - Approval has been granted for Vancouver Island's first mass-timber building to be constructed. The location is in Esquimalt, B.C., which is at the southern tip of Vancouver Island.“This is an innovative project that is going to serve to really bring focus to Esquimalt as a municipality that does innovative and exciting things,” project manager Troy Grant told Victoria News.Upon completion, the 12-storey, 83-unit building will weigh only 25 per cent of a similarly sized concrete and steel building.Read the full article here.
April 25, 2018 - Ontario is investing $7.8 million in research, education and construction of tall wood buildings so more wood products can be used in new homes and taller buildings through the new Mass Timber Program. The use of wood in infrastructure can help address climate change by storing carbon in buildings and by avoiding greenhouse gas pollution associated with other carbon-intensive materials. “Ontario’s Mass Timber Program will help make us a world leader in innovative new wood products and tall wood frame building construction,” Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry Nathalie Des Rosiers. “Our government is committed to moving beyond six-storey structures and through our new centre for innovation, and partnerships with educational institutions here in Ontario, we know we can build a future that is environmentally friendly, innovative and safe.” Ontario's Mass Timber Program has been developed to promote the use of wood in taller buildings by: Providing funding for research and development of innovative wood products, undertaken by academic and private research organizations, to support potential wood-related changes to the Building Code and other standards Funding post-secondary education institutions to provide skills development and technical training and to create tools relating to using wood in construction Supporting the establishment of a tall wood research institute in Ontario, in partnership with researchers, universities, and colleges Demonstrating the successful use of mass timber in design, construction, and the fire safety of taller wooden buildings (seven storeys and higher) including four tall wood demonstration projects. “In 2012 I introduced a Private Member’s Bill to allow for six-storey wood frame construction in Ontario, and this was adopted into the Building Code in 2015,” said Bill Mauro, Minister of Municipal Affairs. “The expanded use of this sustainable resource in the construction industry is important for northern Ontario’s economy, and compliments the work my ministry is doing on how we can allow for tall wood buildings higher than six storeys to be built in the province.” In 2015, Ontario made changes to its Building Code related to the use of wood-frame construction in mid-rise construction of up to six storeys. Numerous projects have been designed and built to these new Building Code requirements and more are coming. In addition to environmental benefits, mass timber structures will have lower building costs due to quicker construction times, while maintaining fire safety standards.
April 10, 2018 - A 12-storey building inherently different than any other in the city will soon rise on Toronto’s eastern waterfront.
March 23, 2018 - On the picturesque shores of Vancouver Island, in the city limits of Nanaimo, B.C., a veneer and roundwood facility has been efficiently turning 100 per cent Douglas fir into quality veneer sheets since 1988.
March 15, 2018 - Norbord Inc. announced today that a shortage of wood will cause it to temporarily suspend production at its oriented strand board (OSB) mill in 100 Mile House, British Columbia. Norbord currently expects the suspension to commence on or about May 14, 2018 and to continue for approximately one month.The significant wildfires that the province of British Columbia experienced in the summer of 2017 seriously damaged logging areas surrounding the 100 Mile House mill. Further, the severe weather conditions this winter have limited loggers' ability to access the forests during the months when the mill typically builds its annual log inventory. Combined, these extraordinary circumstances have impacted Norbord's ability to secure a sufficient wood supply to operate the mill on a continuous basis during this one-month period.Norbord will continue to supply its customers with production from its other OSB mills and the 100 Mile House mill will continue to receive log deliveries during this period. The Company currently estimates that the curtailment will negatively impact its second quarter 2018 financial results by approximately US$5 million.The 100 Mile House mill has a stated annual production capacity of 440 million square feet (3/8-inch basis).
March 6, 2018 - Oregon-based Roseburg Forest Products recently reached an agreement in principle with Pembroke MDF, Inc. to purchase Pembroke’s medium density fiberboard (MDF) and molding production facilities located in northeastern Ontario, Canada. Upon final due diligence and board of director approval, the parties expect the sale to close by April 9, 2018. The acquisition will be Roseburg’s first international purchase and will continue the company’s expansion throughout North America. Roseburg is currently building an engineered wood products plant in Chester, S.C., and recently acquired 158,000 acres of timberland in Virginia and North Carolina. “The Pembroke plant and its employees present untapped potential that can be used to better serve existing and future customers of our innovative and versatile MDF product line,” said Mark Avery, Roseburg senior vice-president of industrial products and national accounts. “It’s an exciting opportunity for Roseburg to move into the northeastern region and further diversify our operations and meet demand.” Roseburg currently owns and operates an MDF plant in Medford, Ore., which produces the company’s Arreis, Medite, Medex, Permacore and Fibrlite product lines. “The addition of the Pembroke MDF plant means Roseburg customers will have access to a broader portfolio of products from a company with a demonstrated, long-term commitment to the industry,” said Jim Buffington, Roseburg’s business director for industrial products. “While this deal represents an excellent strategic opportunity for the company, it also offers Pembroke employees and suppliers the promise of stability and consistency provided by Roseburg’s large manufacturing enterprise,” Roseburg president and CEO Grady Mulbery said. “This is a win-win for everyone involved, and we look forward to what the future will bring.” Founded in 1936, Roseburg Forest Products is a privately owned company and one of North America’s leading producers of particleboard, medium density fiberboard and thermally fused laminates. Roseburg also manufactures softwood and hardwood plywood, lumber, LVL and I-joists. The company owns and sustainably manages more than 600,000 acres of timberland in Oregon, North Carolina and Virginia, as well as an export wood chip terminal facility in Coos Bay, Ore. Roseburg products are shipped throughout North America and the Pacific Rim. To learn more about the company please visit www.Roseburg.com.
March 13, 2018 - Pinnacle and West Fraser have begun the conversion of an existing particle board facility in Smithers, B.C., to a wood pellet production facility.The project under the Smithers Pellet Limited Partnership will be co-owned by West Fraser Timber Co. (30 per cent) and Pinnacle (70 per cent).Located in northwestern B.C. approximately halfway between Prince George and Prince Rupert, the Smithers facility is connected by direct rail to Pinnacle’s Westview Port Terminal in Prince Rupert.The plant will have an annual capacity of 125,000 metric tonnes, with production expected to begin in the third quarter of 2018.Both fibre supply and customer off-take agreements are in place under long-term agreements, the company reports. “We are pleased to be partnering on the Smithers facility redevelopment with West Fraser. This project will contribute to the economic vitality and job growth of Smithers and other local communities,” Robert McCurdy, CEO of Pinnacle, said in a news release. “We are committed to the numerous communities throughout the Western Canadian fibre basket in which we operate, and we plan to continue to look for similar projects to support our future growth.”Pinnacle currently operates six industrial wood pellet production facilities and a port terminal in B.C., and, in addition to the Smithers operation, has a new production facility under construction in Entwistle, Alta.
Feb. 27, 2018 - Eric Savics and Danny Hagge established Van Urban Timber to produce live-edge slabs and custom wood furniture from locally salvaged urban trees in Vancouver, B.C. “Van Urban Timber started with a theory and an idea that came from Danny [Hagge]," Savics says. "He had a theory that there were enough urban trees coming down on a daily basis that could sustain enough fibre to run a small timber business. What we would do, is provide a free service to go and pick up these trees whether they were coming down for reasons of liability, aesthetic, development, what have you.” “When we started Van Urban Timber we were excited because we were doing something people weren’t doing in the city," Hagge says. "We were taking green waste and turning it into something no one was producing in Vancouver. I think that is the backbone of our company. No matter what, we are always going to strive to be recycling, reusing, and I think that’s the way of the future. Renewable is definitely the way.”
Feb. 27, 2018 - Lincoln Dobson is in the search, rescue and recycling business. He searches for old growth forest timber used in building construction, rescues them from the demolition scrap heap, and recycles the douglas fir, western larch, spruce, and pine beams into new timber frame buildings, lumber products, and even heirloom-quality bed frames. By harvesting the industrial forest in this way, Lincoln’s Buena Vista, Sask.,-based business, Last Mountain Timber Wrighting and Recycling, helps to preserve existing old growth forests while providing some of the soundest, richly-textured, appearance grade wood available for new construction. “After high school, I started tree planting in Western Canada and could see the logging clear cuts, which disturbed me,” Lincoln says. “I have a love of nature and wondered what I could do to help the forest in addition to planting trees.” Besides tree planting, Lincoln also spent years working for a timber framing company in British Columbia, where he acquired the mortise and tenon joinery skills needed to build hand-crafted timber frame structures. His inspiration for rescuing and recycling wood was ignited when his father, who was in the building demolition business, informed him that many old wooden grain elevators scattered throughout the rural countryside were being demolished. When he returned to Buena Vista, Lincoln’s desire to save forests along with his sawmilling and carpentry skills enabled him to launch Last Mountain Timber. Throughout the past 20 years, the company has rescued more than 1.6 million board feet of timber from demolished buildings. The old growth beams have typically been in structural building components anywhere from 40 to 110 years, with some beams measuring as large as 12” X 16” up to 24’ long. The company either salvages the timbers themselves or purchases them from elsewhere as they become available. Last Mountain Timber’s best industrial timber resource has been old wooden grain elevators slated for demolition. For many years, the business was extremely busy rescuing high quality, old growth wood commonly used in these structures. “There were some summers when I was getting a grain elevator each week and dealing with five or six demolition companies,” Lincoln says. “Now it is in its twilight.”To this point, the company has salvaged timber from 205 grain elevators, but Dobson says that similar to old growth forests, it is becoming harder and harder to find industrial timbers from demolition projects, as many grain storage silos have transitioned to cement construction. This year, there were only three elevator demolition projects and that will likely be the last of them. In the meantime, the company’s customers keep a keen eye for demolition projects where beams could be rescued and let Lincoln know when they become available. While harvesting the industrial forest is an important part of Dobson’s business, what happens to the old growth timber after they are rescued is how the company makes a profit. The timbers are sometimes used in new timber frame construction, but more often, the surfaces on the square beams are carefully sawn to remove the grey exterior appearance acquired over time to reveal their natural inner beauty. The timbers are then custom-sawn into a variety of wood dimensions to meet customer requirements. Recently, they installed a 12” X 14” timber measuring 20’ long and a couple of 12” X 14” posts at the entrance to the Jiffy Lube headquarters building in Edmonton, Alta. They have also supplied material for a Montana’s restaurant in Saskatoon, Sask. While they have done business throughout Canada and the United States, their sales and projects these days are a lot closer to home. The key component to the sawmilling side of their business is a Wood-Mizer LT40 band sawmill with a 12’ bed extension. This allows the company to custom saw timbers up to 33’ long. While there was no question that Lincoln was going to purchase a Wood-Mizer sawmill because of his past positive experience using the equipment, he says it was important to properly power the unit to deal with harder wood material like recycled douglas fir. “I was definitely looking for a diesel. I get so much more power and so much more fuel efficiency with it,” Lincoln says. “I knew that I was going to be a professional about running my business, and so I chose the Wood-Mizer LT40 because it was a heavier duty unit. I can definitely count on it. The sawmill is durable and dollar for dollar, it’s probably some of the best money I’ve ever spent.” Recently, Lincoln upgraded to using Wood-Mizer RazorTip carbide tipped blades for remanufacturing purposes on abrasive timber. The material produced on the band sawmill has numerous uses in homes, cabins, lodges, commercial structures, home additions, garages, barns, gazebos and covered residential decks. “When we put a timber on there, it could be for a set of stairs, a table, a bed or a bar top,” Lincoln says, depending on the cut list to fill orders. The company also manufactures truss and roof systems, residential and commercial flooring, mouldings, baseboards, and casings. The material from the band sawmill could also be components for the supply and construction of engineered and handcrafted mortise and tenon timber frame buildings that Last Mountain Timber offers as part of its diverse product line. To complement his Wood-Mizer sawmill, Lincoln uses a Wood-Mizer EG200 twin blade board edger primarily to conserve and edge grey jacket boards generated from the first cut on the bandsaw mill. These boards are aesthetically pleasing material for feature walls or as headboards on bed frames. Most recently, Lincoln purchased a Wood-Mizer BMS250 blade sharpener and BMT150 tooth setter. “It’s working really well because the system is able to do a better job than the two guys I was sending my blades to for sharpening,” Lincoln says. He says that he likes that Wood-Mizer offers many options to grow as needed with all their equipment. With industrial old growth forest timber becoming harder to find, Last Mountain Timber has made the transition to also marketing green and first-cut wood, which includes processing raw logs, sawing other wood species like birch, and salvaging local downed trees that might have ended up in the landfill or burned as firewood. Lincoln concludes that he depends on and uses his Wood-Mizer equipment every day and his business wouldn’t be where it is today without it.
Feb. 26, 2018 - Located in the small community of Haute-Aboujagane in the southeastern part of New Brunswick is the family-owned and operated G.L. Wood Products. Established in 1985, the value-added remanufacturing company produces a variety of wood products including wooden boxes, pallets, stickers & laths, and dunnage. “The main line is buying lumber at a certain price that we remanufacture and sell for a higher price,” said Guy Donelle, operations manager at G.L. Wood Products. “Over the years, we have diversified and grown our company from 5 seasonal employees to over 40 yearly employees.”G.L. Wood Products is situated a few miles west of the Atlantic Ocean where the local economy relies heavily on the fish and wood products industries. The company capitalizes on both markets and first came into business by primarily processing wooden boxes for shipping fish domestically as well as to the northeastern United States, Haiti, Dominican Republic, and Iceland. G.L. produces various sized boxes for smoked herring, cod, halibut, oysters, potatoes, berries, and boned salt ranging from five pound to 300 pound capacities. Donelle said the industry prefers wooden boxes compared to cardboard or waxed curtain cardboard boxes because clients generally reuse the quality wood for another purpose, especially in countries such as Haiti and the Dominican. Wooden boxes produced by G.L. were originally processed by double arbor circular saw blades, but the business had issues with the product consistency and quality. In 1995, G.L. purchased a six-head horizontal resaw manufactured by Wood-Mizer in order to increase their efficiency from the thin-kerf bandsaw blades it utilized.“It changed the company,” Donelle said. “Because of the thin-kerf, we increased 20 per cent of our production by getting an extra piece from each 2 x 6.”After buying heat treated dry spruce 2 x 6 lumber, the multi-head resaw splits the boards horizontally in half to get two ends of the wooden box. For the box sides, bottom, and cover, another 2 x 6 board is split into five pieces through one complete pass on the six-head resaw. Once the correct size of box pieces are prepared and custom printing of a company’s name and product description is added, the pieces ship to the customer unassembled which saves on shipping costs and cargo space. According to Donelle, the operation became more efficient when running their equipment at an optimal speed to process up to 28,000 board feet during each nine hour work shift. For more than 20 years with the same resaw, the company has processed six million board feet of dry spruce annually which is equal to more than one million wooden boxes produced for the seafood shipping and packaging industry each year.Along with the success of wooden boxes, diversification of products has been pivotal for the growth of the business. Although the Atlantic provinces are not considered to be a large manufacturing sector, in 1996 G.L. identified a market to produce and sell wooden pallets for the industry.“We have grown the business by selling to fisheries, peat moss companies and also the manufacturing sector,” Donelle said. “We build a lot of custom pallets both softwood and hardwood and have over 60 different types of pallets from stringer, block, and wing pallets.”Although pallet production is supplemental to the primary wooden box business, the company produces more than 300,000 pallets per year for companies throughout Eastern Canada and the United States.In 2005, G.L. further diversified and added a second Wood-Mizer six-head resaw to begin producing kiln stickers and laths for local sawmills in the area.“The [Wood-Mizer] multi-head resaw gives us the kerf and the precision needed for making these products,” Donelle said. “With the durability and service we were getting from Wood-Mizer, we didn’t hesitate in buying a second multi-head and didn’t even quote the competition.”For manufacturing the stickers and laths, G.L. takes a 2 x 6 piece and passes it through the six-head resaw vertically to produce stickers. “That’s why we bought the second multi-head,” Donelle explained. “Because we can get seven boards off the 2 x 6 in one pass.” Almost nothing goes to waste in the operation as byproducts prove profitable as well with the selling of kindling from below-grade kiln stickers along with shavings and sawdust sold to local farmers. The scheduled management of their bandsaw blades has also proved beneficial by sharpening each blade as many as six times instead of throwing them away at the first signs of dullness.“Instead of using a blade and run it until it breaks, we change the blades every half day,” Donelle said. “By doing that we save a lot on the downtime because you seldom see blades break during production.”G.L. depends on Wood-Mizer blade sharpeners and tooth setters to maintain the performance of their own blades on-site and has been using Wood-Mizer bandsaw blades for the past several years.Today, G.L. is making wooden boxes more than ever, but has now diversified into additional wood products and markets to establish a sound blueprint for sustained success. Throughout decades of lucrative operations, Donelle said their accomplishments have come from employing good people and treating them as family. “You really have to surround yourself with good people. When you have good employees and good suppliers and good customers, you’re building all the right bridges and it keeps business simpler. Our employees are ultimately important to our business and our overall key to success.”
Feb. 9, 2018 – Natural wood has been used to build structures for centuries, but it has its limitations. Even after pre-treatment, temperature changes like extreme heat can make wood expand causing it to weaken.A team of scientists at the University of Maryland came up with a two-step process to help natural wood overcome those barriers since it is a cheap and preferred building material all over the world. Their solution involves the partial removal of lignin and hemicellulose from the natural wood followed by hot-pressing to completely densify the natural wood and increase its strength tenfold. “Our processed wood has a specific strength higher than that of most structural metals and alloys, making it a low-cost, high-performance, lightweight alternative,” the scientists wrote in their academic article published in the science journal Nature.
Jan. 2, 2018 - Alberta forest products company Millar Western Forest Products Ltd. announced that it is continuing to execute its growth strategy through the acquisition of Spruceland Millworks Inc. Millar Western has acquired all shares of the company, its manufacturing operations in Acheson, Alta., and its woodlands assets. The transaction brings together two companies that have enjoyed a productive business relationship for decades.Spruceland Millworks is a value-added manufacturer and international distributor of high quality SPF wood products. Started in 1982 by Ben Sawatzky with a simple table saw and a second-hand forklift, the company today has grown to become a "go-to" supplier for its customers and trusted employer in the region. Its more than 100 highly-skilled employees operate a 130,000-square foot manufacturing facility in Acheson. "For the past 35 years, Spruceland Millworks has been a leader in Alberta's value-added wood products sector, developing new products and building new markets in Canada, the U.S. and overseas," said Craig Armstrong, president and chief executive officer of Millar Western. "Through most of those years, Millar Western has been Spruceland's largest supplier of raw material. We look forward to working in even closer partnership with Spruceland leadership to continue the advancement of this dynamic business." This transaction will strengthen Millar Western by integrating the company's existing sawmill operations with Spruceland's value-added manufacturing capabilities. Operating as a division of Millar Western, Spruceland will continue to work under its existing, proven management team and highly-regarded brand. "Alberta forest companies have a reputation as progressive, responsible and innovative," said Tim Fazio, managing partner and co-founder of Atlas Holdings, which entered into partnership with Millar Western in May 2017, becoming majority shareholder. "We are excited about the prospects for growth and expansion within the province's forest sector, led by proven companies like Millar Western and Spruceland." Ben Sawatzky, Spruceland Millworks chief executive officer, commented that the two companies share a family-business background and a common approach to management. "With their long history in Alberta, strong core values, proven ability in sustainable forest management, commitment to the value-added sector and reputation as a good employer, Millar Western is ideally suited to assist Spruceland in its next phase of growth. I am especially pleased that this strategic alliance will ensure a strong future for Spruceland's dedicated staff and security of supply for our valued customers." Headquartered in Edmonton, Millar Western is a century-old, Alberta-based forest products company that produces SPF and aspen lumber, pulp and bioenergy at facilities in Whitecourt and Fox Creek. Established in 1982 and based in Acheson, Spruceland uses SPF dimension lumber to produce value-added wood products including decking, studs, furring strips and industrial access mats. Combined, Millar Western and Spruceland employ nearly 700 people on a full-time basis, and hundreds more on contract.
Nov. 3, 2017 - Stella-Jones Inc. (TSX:SJ) ("Stella-Jones" or the "Company") today announced financial results for its third quarter ended September 30, 2017. "Stella-Jones' growing reach in the utility pole and residential lumber markets led to solid sales growth in these product categories during the third quarter, more than offsetting the effect of lower year-over-year pricing in the railway tie product category. Furthermore, a strong operating cash flow generation allowed us to significantly reduce our long-term debt and positions us for future expansion," said Brian McManus, President and Chief Executive Officer. Financial highlights (in millions of Canadian dollars, except per share data) Quarters ended Sept. 30, Nine-months ended Sept. 30, 2017 2016 2017 2016 Sales 517.6 512.6 1,508.8 1,496.6 Operating income 63.1 67.3 178.4 205.1 Net income for the period 42.0 45.7 116.8 135.4 Per share - basic and diluted ($) 0.61 0.66 1.68 1.96 Weighted average shares outstanding (basic, in '000s) 69,330 69,255 69,319 69,200 THIRD QUARTER RESULTS Sales reached $517.6 million, up 1.0% from $512.6 million last year. Acquisitions contributed sales of approximately $2.1 million, while the conversion effect from fluctuations in the value of the Canadian dollar, Stella-Jones' reporting currency, versus the U.S. dollar, had a negative impact of $9.9 million on the value of U.S. dollar denominated sales. Excluding these factors, sales increased by $12.9 million, or 2.5%. Railway tie sales amounted to $160.8 million, compared with sales of $186.6 million in last year's third quarter. Excluding the currency conversion effect, railway tie sales declined approximately $21.7 million, or 11.6%, mainly due to lower pricing. Utility pole sales reached $172.5 million in the third quarter of 2017, representing a 7.8% increase over sales of $160.0 million a year ago. Excluding the contribution from acquisitions and the currency conversion effect, sales increased approximately $14.4 million, or 9.0%, reflecting organic sales growth in the southeastern United States and a gradual return to historical maintenance demand. Sales in the residential lumber category reached $125.8 million in the third quarter of 2017, up from $107.3 million a year earlier. Excluding the currency conversion effect, residential lumber sales increased approximately $20.2 million, or 18.8%, mainly reflecting higher selling prices due to increased untreated lumber costs and more favourable weather in Canada during the third quarter of 2017 compared to the same period last year. Industrial product sales reached $25.6 million in the third quarter of 2017, down from $27.5 million in the third quarter of 2016. This variation is mainly due to lower sales of marine pilings in Canada, partially offset by higher sales of rail-related products in the United States. Logs and lumber sales totalled $32.9 million, versus $31.3 million in the third quarter of 2016. This variation reflects the timing of lumber purchase and resale activities, the timing of timber harvesting, as well as higher selling prices due to increased lumber costs. Operating income stood at $63.1 million, or 12.2% of sales, compared with $67.3 million, or 13.1% of sales in the third quarter of the previous year. The decrease as a percentage of sales essentially reflects lower selling prices for railway ties and a less favourable geographical mix in the utility pole category. Net income for the third quarter of 2017 was $42.0 million, or $0.61 per diluted share, versus $45.7 million, or $0.66 per diluted share, in the third quarter of 2016. NINE-MONTH RESULTS For the nine-month period ended September 30, 2017, sales amounted to $1.51 billion, versus $1.50 billion for the corresponding period a year earlier. Acquisitions contributed sales of $40.9 million, while the currency conversion effect had a negative impact of $4.3 million on the value of U.S. dollar denominated sales. Excluding these factors, sales decreased approximately $24.4 million, or 1.6%. Operating income reached $178.4 million, or 11.8% of sales, compared with $205.1 million, or 13.7% of sales, last year. Net income totalled $116.8 million, or $1.68 per diluted share, versus $135.4 million, or $1.96 per diluted share, in the prior year. SOLID FINANCIAL POSITION As at September 30, 2017, the Company's financial position remained solid with long-term debt, including the current portion, of $454.1 million, down significantly from $615.8 million three months earlier. The decrease in long-term debt reflects a solid operating cash flow generation during the quarter and, to a lesser extent, the effect of local currency translation on U.S. dollar denominated long-term debt. As at September 30, 2017, Stella-Jones' total debt to total capitalization ratio was 0.30:1, down from 0.37:1 three months earlier. QUARTERLY DIVIDEND OF $0.11 PER SHARE On November 2, 2017, the Board of Directors declared a quarterly dividend of $0.11 per common share payable on December 21, 2017 to shareholders of record at the close of business on December 4, 2017. OUTLOOK "Based on current trends, we expect to conclude 2017 with slightly higher sales compared to the previous year. Looking ahead to 2018, conditions prevailing in the railway tie category should yield relatively stable sales. Meanwhile, normal maintenance patterns and improving demand for transmission poles should provide further momentum in the utility pole category. We also expect margins to slightly improve throughout 2018. Our focus remains on growing shareholder value by maximizing operating cash flow through ensuring efficient and cost- effective operations. Funds generated will be invested in working capital and our existing network, while maintaining an optimal dividend policy and examining expansion opportunities that offer strategic value in our main product categories," concluded Mr. McManus. CONFERENCE CALL Stella-Jones will hold a conference call to discuss these results on November 3, 2017, at 10:00 AM Eastern Time. Interested parties can join the call by dialing 1-647-788-4922 (Toronto or overseas) or 1-877-223-4471 (elsewhere in North America). Parties unable to call in at this time may access a recording by calling 1-800-585-8367 and entering the passcode 83494502. This recording will be available on Friday, November 3, 2017 as of 1:00 PM Eastern Time until 11:59 PM Eastern Time on Friday, November 10, 2017. NON-IFRS FINANCIAL MEASURES Operating income is a financial measure not prescribed by IFRS and is not likely to be comparable to similar measures presented by other issuers. Management considers this non-IFRS measure to be useful information to assist knowledgeable investors regarding the Company's financial condition and results of operations as it provides an additional measure of its performance. ABOUT STELLA-JONES Stella-Jones Inc. (TSX:SJ) is a leading producer and marketer of pressure treated wood products. The Company supplies North America's railroad operators with railway ties and timbers, and the continent's electrical utilities and telecommunication companies with utility poles. Stella-Jones also manufactures and distributes residential lumber and accessories to retailers for outdoor applications, as well as industrial products for construction and marine applications. The Company's common shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Except for historical information provided herein, this press release may contain information and statements of a forward-looking nature concerning the future performance of the Company. These statements are based on suppositions and uncertainties as well as on management's best possible evaluation of future events. Such factors may include, without excluding other considerations, fluctuations in quarterly results, evolution in customer demand for the Company's products and services, the impact of price pressures exerted by competitors, the ability of the Company to raise the capital required for acquisitions, and general market trends or economic changes. As a result, readers are advised that actual results may differ from expected results.
Oct. 27, 2017 - Over the past few years, the lumber industry has been confronted with chip production above and beyond the demand, resulting in the creation of big surpluses in various regions of Quebec and Ontario. This situation may well get worse in the coming years, as pulp and paper mills—which used to be large consumers of this resource—buy less and less chips or if there is a substantial increase in production. At the same time, the wood panel manufacturing industry is facing a certain number of challenges relating to the constant supply of raw materials, and particularly with regard to the quantity and quality of the materials.To meet the needs of panel manufacturers that want to diversify their sources of supply as well as respond to the necessity of finding new markets for sawmill residues, FPInnovations has launched a new project aimed at evaluating innovative fragmentation technologies adapted to sawmills that convert small diameter logs for the production of by-products to be used in manufacturing structural and non-structural panels. Within this project, FPInnovations’ Engineered Wood Products Manufacturing team shipped to a European company already using the fragmentation technology sawmill residues in the form of slab wood, trim ends and cull logs from various species and in a variety of shapes and diameters. FPInnovations will evaluate the possibility of fragmenting these logs that are unfit for being processed into lumber in order to use them to make wood wafers of desired dimensions for panel board mills.Thanks to this new approach, wood wafers produced in sawmills may be delivered to panel manufacturers and used directly as raw materials, without any subsequent processing. In addition to offering new opportunities, this approach will help improve the mechanical and physical properties of the panels, while cutting the production costs, through a decrease in the density of the panels and a reduction in the amount of resin-based binder required.This development project aims to offer companies producing wood chips a way of increasing revenue from non-traditional markets. For more information, contact
Aug. 14, 2017 - The owner of Precision Custom Remanufacturing in west Abbotsford, B.C., is crediting firefighters for preventing a fire that broke out on the property last week from destroying a $1.2-million thermal kiln.
Aug. 10, 2017 - The low Canadian dollar as well as acquisitions helped Stella-Jones post a sales increase of 5.5 per cent from last year's number in Q2.
Aug. 3, 2017 - Litco International, Inc. announces the publication of a new white paper: A Comparison of Pallet Strength and Functionality. The 12-page white paper, authored by Dr. Marshall White, provides detailed analysis comparing Litco's Inca molded pallets to GMA-style, new and repaired, traditional nailed wood pallets for one-way shipping.
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