Vernon, British Columbia, Canada, 26 November 2009 — Tolko Industries Ltd. today announced the indefinite closure of its High Level Lumber Division in High Level, Alberta. The company has notified the employees and contractors at the lumber operation.
Current log inventory will allow the sawmill to operate until 18 December 2009. The planer will continue to operate until mid-January 2010, when it also will shut down.
“While significant operational improvements have been made in a number of areas and the efforts of our employees and contractors are recognized, the reality is that we continue to be in the worst market conditions our industry has ever seen,” said Mike Harkies, vice president and general manager, Solid Wood & Kraft Paper. "The current cost structure at High Level simply makes the continued operation of that mill not viable,” he said, adding, “a restart of the High Level operation is dependent on there being a sustained improvement in the economic conditions.”
This curtailment will remove 385 million board feet of lumber from the market.
Tolko Industries Ltd. is a private, Canadian-owned forest products company based in Vernon, British Columbia, with manufacturing operations across Western Canada.