More than 100 jobs will return to Crofton as officials announced there will be $18.8 million made available in funding for the local mill.
Last fall Paper Excellence announced it was going to “curtail operations” at the Crofton Catalyst facility, shutting down two of its paper machines.
The announcement came as paper demand in Chinese markets shrunk, and chemical costs associated with production skyrocketed, according to Paper Excellence on Oct. 6, 2022.
“We won’t stand by and do nothing while that’s happening, we’re going to take action,” B.C. Premier David Eby said outside of the Crofton mill.
“I am so glad to be with you here today, to announce that the mill will be up and running again. More than 100 people back to work, on the site.”
With the help of provincial and federal government funding, $18.8 million will be put into the mill to help retool the facility to produce water-resistant paper packaging and cutlery.
“This and other innovations will keep this mill competitive, reduce production waste, and use fewer trees for the same volume of product – and at the same time reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” Eby added.
The mill will be able to make better use of wood products typically deemed undesirable, such as stock that’s been damaged by forest fires.
The funding is part of the StrongerBC Economic Plan, aimed at bolstering rural areas undergoing rapid changes in the field of forestry. The initiative plans to spend $90 million over the next three years by helping forestry companies buy new equipment designed for more modern timber and paper product manufacturing.
“This investment in the mill at Crofton is exciting. Not only will it put people back to work, it is an example of how investment in our forestry infrastructure can help reduce emissions, encourage innovations, reduce waste and make sure we get the most value from every tree harvested,” said Doug Routley, parliamentary secretary for forests.