Timber Giant Rosboro Co. Shifts Gears, Temporarily Shuttering Springfield Mill
In a strategic move to rebalance its business portfolio, Rosboro Co., a prominent player in the timber industry, announced the temporary closure of its stud lumber mill in Springfield, Oregon. This decision, effective immediately, will unfortunately result in the layoff of 40 dedicated employees.
A Shift in Production
The company plans to reopen the facility in approximately two years, but with a significant change in production. Instead of manufacturing timber studs for home framing, the mill will focus on producing glue-laminated timber, a core component of Rosboro’s business strategy.
Despite this shift, Rosboro remains committed to its Springfield workforce. The company will continue to employ 295 employees, maintaining other operations in the area.
Rising Costs and Regulatory Challenges
The closure is largely attributed to the escalating costs of timber harvesting, a consequence of new regulations implemented in Oregon. The Private Forest Accord, which passed the state legislature in 2021, has reportedly increased log prices, putting pressure on smaller timber producers.
Rosboro’s decision to close its stud lumber mill marks the second instance of a timber company in Oregon citing new regulations as a reason for mill closure.
Investing in the Core Business
In line with its strategic repositioning, Rosboro Co. is investing $100 million into facilities that support its core business of glue-laminated timber. This investment underscores the company’s commitment to reducing its reliance on commodity products, which are susceptible to volatile market pricing.
As Rosboro Co. navigates this challenging landscape, it continues to balance its business objectives with its commitment to its workforce and the communities in which it operates.
The temporary closure of the Springfield mill is a testament to the company’s agility in adapting to market dynamics and regulatory changes. It also serves as a stark reminder of the far-reaching implications of policy decisions on local industries and workforces.
As Rosboro Co. shifts its focus towards glue-laminated timber, the future of the Springfield mill hangs in the balance. But with a robust investment plan and a commitment to its core business, the company is poised to weather the storm and emerge stronger.
In the meantime, the 40 employees affected by the closure are left to navigate their own uncertain futures. Their stories serve as a poignant reminder of the human cost of industry transformations.