Monday, September 26, 2016

No Tolko Shutdown Worries Here

Posted on 9/26/2016 7:14 AM by Pete McIntyre 107.5 KISSFM
The MLA for Vernon Monashee doesn't think the Tolko mills in the North Okanagan could suffer a similar fate as the one in Merritt. Tolko will be closing its sawmill in Merritt in December, putting 200 people out of work, which MLA Eric Foster says is a result of a lack of logs due to the pine beetle epidemic. "We are very very fortunate in this area. We had the pine beetle obviously affect us, but it may up such a low percentage of our profile relative to what it certainly did to Merritt and in the Cariboo where it was huge." "A big part of it is due to the fact that we didn't get hit in this area with the pine beetle as bad simply because we didn't have as much pine as a percentage of our profile. It only made up about 28% of the profile here." Foster has been told by Tolko officials the mills in Lavington, Armstrong, and Lumby are secure for the forseable future. What has happened in Merritt is a direct result of the pine beetle, so with not enough logs to supply both mills there, one of them had to shut down. I had a long talk with the Tolko people to get the numbers on it. Some of the wood now will be coming to the Lavington Sawmill, some to Kelowna and some to Kamloops, that already is getting some of that wood."

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