Vernon-based Tolko Industries Ltd. has announced extended downtime for the month of January for its divisions in Armstrong, in the North Okanagan, and Soda Creek in the Cariboo. (tolko.com)

Vernon-based Tolko Industries Ltd. has announced extended downtime for the month of January for its divisions in Armstrong, in the North Okanagan, and Soda Creek in the Cariboo. (tolko.com)

Tolko extends downtime at mills in North Okanagan, Cariboo

Armstrong and Soda Creek divisions to be down through to end of January, then re-evaluated

Two divisions of Vernon-based Tolko Industries will take additional downtime for the month of January.

Tolko says the curtailment affects the Armstrong and Soda Creek lumber operations, and that the downtime will be evaluated at the end of January to determine the next steps.

“A lack of available economic fibre and weak markets are impacting our operating footprint in the province,” said Troy Connolly, Tolko vice-president of solid wood, in a press release. “While our goal is to ensure consistency and stability for all of our operations, the steep decline in lumber demand and upward cost pressures in the province make the decision necessary.”

These temporary curtailments will reduce production by approximately 35 million board feet of stud lumber.

“This downtime will affect more than 350 of our employees in these operations. We do not make these decisions without a lot of consideration,” said Connolly. “We have an extremely committed workforce at these locations whose families and communities rely on Tolko. We will continue to support our employees during this challenging time.”

Pino Pucci, Tolko vice-president of marketing and sales, assures customers that his team “will continue to support our customers and do our best to minimize any impacts. Our customers are understanding of current market conditions and aware of our ongoing commitment to serve them.”

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