Sales in 2021 Up 60 Per Cent From 2020
Saskatchewan's forestry sector reached an all-time high of $1.8 billion in forestry product sales in 2021, an increase of 60 per cent from 2020.
"These record numbers are more great news for Saskatchewan's economy and show we're fully on track to achieve our goals of doubling forestry sector growth by 2030 and substantially increasing the value of our exports," Energy and Resources Minister Bronwyn Eyre said. "Forestry is currently the largest sector in our province's north, supports nearly 8,000 jobs and relies heavily on Indigenous workers and businesses."
In September 2021, the Government of Saskatchewan announced timber allocations to support four major forestry projects, totalling nearly $1 billion in capital investments and is expected to create over 2,600 forestry jobs. These projects include construction of an oriented strand board (OSB) mill in Prince Albert, expansion of the Carrot River sawmill, upgrades to facilitate increased lumber production at the Big River sawmill, and the reopening of the Prince Albert pulp mill.
Saskatchewan has seven large primary forest product facilities producing lumber, OSB and pulp. Additionally, approximately 210 businesses produce a variety of primary and secondary forest products, and over 230 supply chain businesses provide goods and services that support primary forest product manufacturers.
Saskatchewan is also home to the largest 100 per cent First Nations-owned forest product mill in Canada (NorSask Forest Products in Meadow Lake). Indigenous people comprise over 27 per cent of Saskatchewan's total forestry sector workforce, the highest percentage of any province. Further, 30 per cent of the provincial timber supply is allocated to Indigenous businesses, also the highest percentage of any province.
Sales in 2021 were led by increasing market prices for lumber and OSB, with continued growth of Asian economies and an increase in housing starts in the U.S. More than 75 per cent of Saskatchewan's primary forest products are exported to other countries, including 67 per cent of lumber and OSB to the U.S. and 100 per cent of pulp to Asia.