West Fraser says production has been restored at its Quebec OSB mill closed in 2008.
According to reports, West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. says it has begun producing and shipping building panels from the Chambord, Que., oriented strand board (OSB) mill it inherited with its recent $4-billion takeover of rival Norbord Inc.
The start of production from the mill shut down in 2008 comes as OSB prices reach record high levels thanks to strong housing and home renovation markets fuelled by the COVID-19 pandemic's work-from-home trend.
Norbord said last year it would reopen the mill in response to customer demand and to offset the permanent closure of its mill at 100 Mile House, B.C.
The company invested some $71 million to prepare the mill for the restart since buying it in 2016 and would spend about $94 million more to finish the project.
The mill was to employ about 120 people when fully operational with an annual production capacity of 550 million square feet (on a 3/8-inch basis). West Fraser also announced that its new lumber-manufacturing complex in Dudley, Georgia is ramping up and is on target to be fully operational by the end of June. The lumber mill will ultimately have a production capacity of 270 million board feet.
And in February, Louisiana-Pacific Corp. announced a plan to restart production at the Peace Valley OSB Mill in Fort St. John, B.C., which was shut down in 2019 because of low prices at the cost of about 200 jobs.