Wood Business

Industry News News
J.D. Irving announces more investments

Apr. 7, 2014, St. Leonard, NB - J.D. Irving will invest $16.8 million in northern New Brunswick, creating 45 new jobs and 9 construction-related jobs. The investments are being made in the forests JDI owns in NB as well as in upgrades to its sawmills in St. Leonard and Kedgwick.

As a result of the new Crown forest policy, JDI is making a $6M investment in new forestry equipment from A.L.P.A. Equipment Ltd in Balmoral, located in Restigouche County. This is in addition to a $16.5M equipment purchase made by JDI in December 2013. The order from JDI, $22.5M in total, will create 10 new jobs at A.L.P.A. Equipment Ltd.

"We have cared for the Black Brook Woodlands near St. Leonard for over 70 years. From these company-owned lands, we have pioneered tree planting as well as GPS and GIS technology and undertaken many forest research projects.These internationally certified forests are both a living research centre and an important contributor to the wood supply that sustains jobs throughout the province," said Jim Irving, Co-Chief Executive Officer of J.D. Irving, Limited."The sawmills at Kedgwick and St. Leonard are vital to local employment and healthy rural economies and we are committed to sustaining and growing them. The Province's results-based forestry initiative provides the sustainable wood supply to invest and grow jobs.We appreciate this vote of confidence in the skill and passion of our mill employees, forestry professionals, harvesters, truckers, silviculture workers, and great suppliers like A.L.P.A. Equipment."

"New Brunswick's forestry sector was built by strong partners, and J.D. Irving, Limited's projects in St. Leonard and Kedgwick demonstrate that the future of our province's biggest economic sector is as bright as its past," said Premier David Alward. "I want to congratulate J.D. Irving, Limited for the confidence it is placing in New Brunswick's greatest resource, its people. These projects will put boots in the woods and in our mills in every region of our province."

Natural Resources Minister Paul Robichaud said the investments being made in St. Leonard is another testament to how the new forestry strategy is working."The strategy is allowing companies like JDI to support communities like St. Leonard, which rely on these industries. A stronger and more competitive forest sector is good news for every New Brunswicker as it is critical to our economic future," Robichaud said.

"This is great news for our community," said Carmel St. Amand, Mayor of St. Leonard." J.D. Irving, Limited has been a dedicated investor in the people, community, forests and mills in northern New Brunswick. These new investments will not only grow short-term construction jobs, but also sustain good paying jobs at the sawmill which has been part of St. Leonard for over 25 years."

Irving's forestry and mill operations account for over 640 jobs (direct and indirect) in St. Leonard, generating a payroll of over $38 million/year. In addition, there are over 300 local businesses in Madawaska and Victoria Counties that supply JDI's forest products operations.

"Every job matters in Kedgwick and the sawmill and forests that surround us are vital to our community," said Jean Paul Savoie, Mayor of Kedgwick. "Renewable forests and an ongoing investment in the competitiveness of the Kedgwick sawmill strengthens the future for over 350 direct and indirect employees as well as over 65 businesses in Restigouche County that depend on these operations. Irving has continued to invest since acquiring the mill in 2004, and today's news affirms their commitment to the community of Kedgwick."

"Irving Woodlands has been a longstanding customer of our company for 38 years," said Serge Landry, Vice President and General Manager of AL.P.A. Equipment Ltd and A Landry Fabrication. "As a business that is headquartered in rural New Brunswick, this contract is great news. A healthy forest products sector impacts more than just the mills - it includes suppliers like us. This is the largest single contract in our history and will result in 10 new jobs."

"When times got tough and companies like Bowater and UPM left the province to start new mills in China and Brazil, Irving stuck with New Brunswick," Landry continued. "Irving invested and kept jobs here at home. As a rural business that depends on the forest sector and good customers like Irving, we are happy to see the Province's commitment to growing the wood supply to secure today's jobs and create more," Landry said.

INVESTMENT DETAILS:

APRIL 2014: $16.8 Million Total Investment

SAWMILLS

St. Leonard Sawmill: $2.5 Million investment in a new chip screen and chip conveyor system
Kedgwick Sawmill: $1.0 Million investment in a dry kiln modernization

WOODLANDS

$7.3 Million increased annual investment in silviculture and tree planting on JDI freehold in New Brunswick
$6 Million invested in 11 new harvesting machines from A.L.P.A. Equipment Ltd of Balmoral, NB

NEW JOBS

7 permanent direct sawmill jobs
15 woodlands jobs
10 jobs at A.L.P.A. Equipment Ltd
23 indirect jobs
9 direct and indirect construction jobs

SEPTEMBER 2012 to FEBRUARY 2014:$13.8 Million Total Investment

SAWMILLS

St. Leonard Sawmill: new dry kiln and site improvements
Veneer Sawmill: new scanning technology
Kedgwick Sawmill: new hot pond

WOODLANDS

Forestry equipment investments (16 new machines from A.L.P.A. Equipment Ltd of Balmoral, NB)
Workforce development & training (44 harvesters and truckers)
Additional private land silviculture investments