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127 workers out of job after Kelowna Tolko mill shuts down ‘indeterminately’

Tough times in the forestry industry have caused a local mill to shut down for an indeterminate amount of time.

Tolko Industry’s Kelowna, on the tail end of a temporary shutdown, announced Thursday that it would not be reopening its doors, as planned on Sept. 15.

“This decision was not easy for us to make,” said Troy Connolly, vice president of Solid Wood.

“We are very disappointed to be in a position where we have to curtail the mill, particularly given the reasons for this extension are beyond our control. However, with lumber market prices at sustained low levels and high log costs in B.C., the mill cannot be cost-competitive.”

The 127 workers at the mill were meant to go back to work on Monday but will now be out of work indefinitely.

“On days like these, our hearts are heavy as we think of our colleagues and friends at Kelowna,” he said.

“It’s hard to know they are suffering today because of reasons that are beyond our control. We know our people in Kelowna have done everything in their power to make the mill successful. They have gone above and beyond. Sadly, this has nothing to do with them or their efforts. We simply cannot operate in current conditions.”


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michael.rodriguez@kelownacapnews.com

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Michael Rodriguez

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