White River Forest Products (WRFP) is pleased to announce that it has received $1.9M in funding from the provincial government through the Ontario’s Jobs and Prosperity Fund.
“We’re happy to be one of the first company to receive monies from this fund,” said Frank Dottori, President and CEO of WRFP. “The upgrades we’re making total over $9.5 million, and the province’s contribution towards creating 15 new jobs and modernizing the facility is an encouraging recognition of the importance of green industries like forestry.”
The project includes new product development, which requires additional debarking and drying capacity, and sawline modifications including residual handling.
“It’s important to better utilize all of our natural resources,” Dottori said. “Instead of leaving behind 30 percent of the species, with new product development we can enable better forest management.”
WRFP currently employs 161 employees from the region, and is hiring at all levels of the company, for labourer, trades, and management positions.
“This will create more than the 15 new jobs on site,” said Dottori. “Of course, there will be spinoff jobs created in forest harvesting, and transportation, among others.”
Current mill capacity is 130 million feet per year, and the investments are to achieve 170 million. feet. “Increased production while the lumber prices are where they are is critical to allow us to be able to continue to modernize our mill and improve efficiencies,” said Dottori. “New product development is also always exciting.”