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J.D. Irving, Limited on Crown Wood Exports

Further to recent media reports regarding Crown wood exports from New Brunswick, a few important facts have not been reported and need to be considered:

JDI Woodlands manages its wood supply and deliveries with four primary objectives:

  • to ensure harvest levels are sustainable
  • to ensure mills are provided with competitively priced wood fibre (including transportation costs)
  • to sustain jobs for local mill workers, woods workers, and truckers
  • to provide sustained markets for private wood producers

Export permits are used on occasion to move a small volume of Crown pulpwood (the upper part of harvested trees) which has no market in NB.  Unfortunately the demand for NB pulpwood has reduced due to the closure of several large pulp and paper mills over the past 10 years [link to diagram].  In the case of the export permits issued to JDI Woodlands in April and July 2014, discussions were held with the local licensees, mill operators, and marketing boards before the permits were issued.  These permits represent less than 1% of our Crown allocation.

Harvesting these trees sustains harvesting, trucking sawmill, railway, and port jobs in NB and also provides stumpage revenue to the Crown.  Since we take private wood at our mills ahead of Crown wood, these permits actually help to ensure we sustain private wood purchases at our mills.

The subject of recent media reports, Maritime Fibre and Energy is a Fredericton sawmill that prides itself on private wood use - "Your Own Home for Your Own Wood".  The site is also home to the offices of the York Sunbury Charlotte (YSC) Marketing Board and the New Brunswick Federation of Woodlot Owners.  The management’s history of operations and purchases from private wood producers has been dismal.  The mill has been closed almost all of the past 5 years and is currently not running or buying private wood, despite having an annual Crown wood allocation and improved lumber markets.  When it did recently run (September 2013-April 2014), its posted purchase prices for logs from private woodlots were less than prices offered at JDI’s nearby Chipman sawmill.  The mill that represents itself as most committed to private wood is closed because it says it cannot afford to pay woodlot owners the current market prices.

In the meantime, JDI Woodlands is purchasing private wood.  Our gates are open and private wood still takes priority over Crown wood.  Our past operating year saw a 25-year record high for wood purchases from private woodlots.  We are buying and using more private wood than any other forestry company in NB.  That wood sustains more than 7000 NB jobs and over 1700 NB suppliers.

J.D. Irving, Limited is offering premium prices and bonuses above our gatewood prices to private wood producers who enter into wood supply contracts. For more information please contact our Purchase Wood representative:

Northern New Brunswick:  Paul Ouellet  506-423-8081 
Southern New Brunswick:  Wendell Munn  506-648-3561

Mary Keith
J.D. Irving, Limited
(506) 632-5122
(506) 650-8209 (cell)  
Follow us on Twitter:  @jdirvinglimited