Lumber mill in southern B.C. cites rising costs for closing doors

KELOWNA, B.C. — A lumber mill in southern British Columbia that employs 174 people is to shut its doors in the new year.

Tolko Industries says it will permanently close its Kelowna division on Jan. 8.

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CEO Brad Thorlakson says wherever possible, employees will be offered positions at other Tolko locations that have vacancies.

The company cited log costs, market conditions and other factors for its decision.

The mill has been operating for nearly 80 years.

The company says it wants to assure customers that Tolko's marketing and sales team will continue to support them.

"At this time, our thoughts are with impacted employees in Kelowna," Thorlakson said in a release Friday.

"This is a difficult decision. The Kelowna mill has been in operation since the 1930s and has contributed to the community through job creation and many other economic spinoffs."

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