Langley-based forestry company San Group has entered into a lumber supply agreement with Seaton Forest Products from Smithers.
As part of this deal, announced on Jan. 27, both companies aim to maximize utilization of fibre through sustainable forestry methods and develop carbon-conscious wood products.
Seaton mill produces around 17 million board feet of product annually and majority of it will be supplied to San Group through this partnership, according to Andy Thompson, co-owner of Seaton Forest Products.
In this circumstance, Seaton will be providing cants, logs that have been squared off for easier conversion into value-added uses by end purchasers.
They’ll be transported from the northwest to San Group’s facilities in Langley and Port Alberni.
The San-Seaton agreement reflects shared values and goals as well as a fundamental commitment to fully utilizing each log harvested, said the companies in a joint statement.
“Creating these relationships starts with values and we knew Seaton’s were aligned with ours when they told us that their staff was 75 per cent First Nations and they view working in the forest industry as a responsibility not a job,” Suki Sanghera, President of San Group said
Additionally, Seaton will become a part of San Group’s global initiative to manufacture the world’s most carbon friendly wood products.
This is a three-year plan in which San Group said it is spending more than $100 million on Vancouver Island, developing wood manufacturing processes with a goal of having its facilities grouped within a 7km radius in Port Alberni for better efficiency.
”We want to show the world that value-added wood products can be manufactured at scale in Canada. Why waste our fibre and let other countries manufacture the wood we harvest?” Kamal Sanghera, CEO of San Group said.
In June last year, San Group announced plans to expand its operations in the northwest soon after announcing its $100 million spending plan in Port Alberni. Of that amount, $60 million will bolster the company’s ability to ship lumber by container ships from Port Alberni’s deep sea port.
The group’s president had then said that it was eyeing the Skeena Industrial Development Park, south of Terrace to build a sawmill to process wood that it already acquired from the region. To date, those plans have yet to materialize.
According to Sanghera, northwest B.C.’s geographic location with ports in Prince Rupert and Kitimat was a natural choice for the company’s expansion plans.
San will be shipping the Seaton cants south using trucks and barges.