Production cuts at Taylor pulp mill extended

Canfor's pulp mill in Taylor | Alaska Highway News file photo

Canfor is extending the curtailment at the Taylor pulp mill into September.

The company announced the extension in its second quarter results released Friday, July 26, citing ongoing market conditions. The curtailment extends five weeks to Sept. 9, cutting summer production of bleached chemi-thermo mechanical pulp by about 50,000 tonnes. The mill was originally scheduled to restart Aug. 5.

"Our pulp business ... delivered solid results in the second quarter but in the latter part of the quarter, we began to see significant erosion of NBSK pulp and BCTMP prices, which in combination with the reduced fibre supply in BC due to the industry-wide sawmill curtailments, resulted in the decision to curtail operations in the third quarter," Canfor president and CEO Don Kayne said.

"We expect to see a modest increase in pulp prices towards the end of 2019 and into 2020 as the global inventory levels come back into balance."

Canfor Pulp Products Inc. reported a net income of $11 million for the second quarter, of 16 cents per share. Pulp shipments were up 11 per cent from the first quarter to 288,000 tonnes, but down 12 per cent from the second quarter of 2018.

Meanwhile, demand for bleached kraft paper is expected to fall through the balance of the year, the company reported. Paper production will be cut by 4,000 tonnes in September as its paper mill in Prince George undergoes planned maintenance.

Canfor Corp. as a whole reported a $49.7-million operating loss for its second quarter.

Prince George Citizen