Interfor latest company to cut lumber production

The softwood lumber industry is continuing to cut back with production as Interfor Corp., one of North America’s largest lumber producers, became the latest company to announce that it was curtaining production.

Interfor says it will reduce lumber production by at least eight percent of capacity in the first quarter as market uncertainty affects demand. The Burnaby, B.C.-based forestry company says the move amounts to at least 100 million board feet.

It says it expects to resume its normal production schedule starting in April but will monitor market conditions and adjust plans accordingly.

The company says the production cuts are likely to come from areas other than its U.S. South operations.

The news comes a day after West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. said it would indefinitely curtail its Perry Sawmill in Florida later in January due to high fiber costs and softening lumber markets.

West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. will indefinitely curtail its Perry Sawmill in Florida later this month. The company says the decision is the result of high fiber costs and softening lumber markets. The cutback at the Perry Sawmill will impact approximately 126 employees and will reduce West Fraser’s US lumber production by 100 million board feet. West Fraser expects to mitigate the impact on employees by providing work opportunities at other West Fraser operations.

In addition, Canfor Corp. is extending its sawmill curtailments in British Columbia due to ongoing weak market conditions and the lack of available economic fiber. The production capacity will be reduced through two-week curtailment extensions in January at select solid wood facilities in B.C.

This will remove approximately 21 million board feet in addition to the 150 million board feet previously announced on December 5, 2022.