Wood Business

Features Harvesting Logging Profiles
Survey snippet 9: Updating the fleet


October 6, 2020
By Ellen Cools
Ellen Cools

Topics

With contractors downsizing their fleets, it makes sense that fewer loggers are planning to replace at least one machine in their fleet within the next two years. In 2018, just 14 per cent of loggers said they would not be replacing machines, compared to 20 per cent in 2020.

Just four per cent of contractors will be replacing 11 or more machines, compared to six per cent in 2018. The majority of loggers are planning to replace three to five machines (34 per cent) followed by loggers planning to replace two machines (21 per cent).

Percentage of contractors planning to replace machinery within two years.

There was a corresponding decrease in the number of contractors planning to replace six to 10 machines – seven per cent compared to 17 per cent in 2018. These numbers are closer to the numbers seen in our 2016 survey, although fewer contractors plan to replace more than six machines.

Percentage of contractors planning to replace machinery within two years in 2016, 2018 and 2020.

Regionally, while Atlantic Canada still has the highest percentage of contractors who do not plan to replace any machines (29.5 per cent), Alberta comes in second, at 27 per cent, followed by Quebec, at 23 per cent.

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While contractors in Alberta still have the largest fleets, it’s contractors in the B.C. Interior that plan to replace the most machines, with 20 per cent planning to replace six or more. Alberta again comes in second, at 18 per cent. The majority of contractors in Alberta (36 per cent) plan to replace three to five machines.

The B.C. Interior also has the highest percentage of contractors planning to replace three to 10 machines (62 per cent), with just 17 per cent saying they will replace no machines. Meanwhile, 56 per cent of loggers in Ontario plan to replace three to five machines in the next two years, followed by 32 per cent that plan to replace one to two.

Like in 2018, Quebec still has the largest percentage of contractors planning to replace one to two machines (47 per cent). But the B.C. Coast and Atlantic Canada also have a large percentage of contractors in this category – 41 per cent each.

Percentage of contractors planning to replace machinery within two years, by region.

Missed last week’s survey snippet? Find a collection of reports published to date here. Look for more news from the CFI 2020 Contractor Survey in our eNews over the coming weeks, with a final digital report in December and a summary in the November/December print issue. Be sure to subscribe to our free eNews to get all the latest industry news.

This survey was conducted in April and May 2020 by independent research firm Bramm & Associates, generating 271 replies to a detailed list of questions. Respondents were distributed according to the geographic breakdown of the forest industry, with 44 per cent of respondents in Western Canada, 26 per cent in Quebec and the rest found in Ontario, Atlantic Canada, and central Canada. Within B.C., responses were split between the B.C. Coast and Interior. Many thanks to our sponsors for making this research possible – Hultdins, Tigercat and John Deere.