JDI's recent investment in its Grand Lake Timber sawmill makes it one of the largest sawmills in Eastern Canada. The 28-week modernization project, that began in the fall of 2014, has increased the production capacity of the mill by 60%. The project features a new saw line that efficiently saws smaller logs into 1x3, 2x3 and 2x4 lumber for the North American market. To accommodate the additional wood flow with the new line, the $37 million project also included the refurbishment of the debarking and stacking areas. World class technology for grading lumber has also been installed.
At the peak of construction, over 180 contractor workers were on the job. The sawmill and its planer mill is now in full operation and employs a total of 212 people.
The investment is part of JDI's $513 million modernization of its forest product operations, in response to the long term forest management strategy by the province of New Brunswick.
JDI woodlands is currently recruiting and training harvesting contractors and truckers. "The forest is growing around us. We've been investing in the forest for decades, so it's great to see that we are now harvesting some of the trees that people in this mill planted 25 to 30 years ago, which are creating jobs for their children," said Jerome Pelletier, General Manager, JDI Sawmill Division.