'The situation is serious': Mill closures put pressure on Kamloops' Kruger mill | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

Would you like to subscribe to our newsletter?

Current Conditions Mainly Clear  -2.2°C

Kamloops News

'The situation is serious': Mill closures put pressure on Kamloops' Kruger mill

Image Credit: Domtar

The company behind Kamloops' pulp mill is feeling the pressure as the facilities that feed its inventory close across the province.

Kruger, which bought the mill from Domtar last spring, isn't facing any layoffs or curtailments yet, but it's bracing for a domino effect.

"The situation is serious, and we are never shielded from difficult market conditions," company spokesperson Paule Veilleux-Turcotte said in an emailed response.

READ MORE: Latest Canfor restructuring affects nearly 500 mill workers in northern B.C.

The Kamloops mill uses product from other mills around the region to make its products.

Often, it's wood other sawmills can't use, so it's repurposed into refined pulp and paper products.

Recent mill closures mean the 60-day inventory reserves have dropped to an estimated 15 days, Veilleux-Turcotte confirmed.

"This demonstrates just how fiber supply has become a challenge recently," he said. "That being said, we are determined to partner with all stakeholders, including the government and First Nations, to find long-term solutions to this provincial fibre issue that affects all industry partners."

READ MORE: Kamloops pulp mill sold to Montreal company

He said Kruger wants to keep the mill open "for the long-term."

While recent mill curtailments and closures in B.C. put pressure on the Kamloops mill, iNFOnews.ca asked whether a reduction in inventory levels was in any way a decision to reduce overhead costs rather than a market consequence. The spokesperson did not answer in his emailed response.

The Kamloops mill changed hands twice in the last two years, but the Kruger sale was forced when Canada's competition commissioner required Richmond-based Paper Excellence to sell the Kamloops facility as part of its Domtar deal in 2021.

B.C.'s forestry sector is no stranger to turbulence, but recent curtailments and closures are not only affecting the supply chain in Kamloops. Hundreds of mill workers have been laid off at B.C. facilities, while Tolko mills in the Okanagan are temporarily shuttered.

Armstrong's plywood and saw mills were closed in December due to a fire, affecting 350 jobs, but its plywood mill recently reopened.

READ MORE: Good and bad news for Tolko workers in Armstrong

To contact a reporter for this story, email Levi Landry or call 250-819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above. 

News from © iNFOnews, 2023

  • Popular kamloops News
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile