COLUMBIA, S.C. – Due to increased global demand for southern yellow pine lumber, Canfor Southern Pine is expanding its existing operations in Darlington County. The $8 million investment is expected to generate 50 new jobs through the addition of a second shift at the manufacturing facility.
“This investment demonstrates Canfor's confidence in South Carolina and the southern yellow pine forest industry,” said Douglas Warstler, president of Canfor's southern pine operations, which are headquartered in Myrtle Beach. “Our partnership with the state and local economic development organizations made this capital project possible, which will contribute significantly to the County's economy through both jobs and increased economic activity.”
Canfor's Darlington facility, located at 1100 Chesterfield Lumber Drive, manufactures southern yellow pine dimension lumber, primarily used in the construction industry. The $8 million investment will be used to upgrade the facility to increase its production while adding a second shift at the plant. The expansion is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2014.
Canfor, which is celebrating its 75th corporate anniversary in 2013, operates 28 manufacturing locations in the U.S. Southeast and Canada, including facilities in Conway, Camden and Darlington. The company presently employs nearly 600 people in South Carolina, with 84 workers in the Darlington facility prior to the expansion.
“A great test for a state's economic development success is whether its business environment fosters the growth of companies that they already have,” said Gov. Nikki Haley. “Canfor Southern Pine's commitment is a great example of growing our existing industry, and we applaud their investment of $8 million and creation of 50 more jobs for Darlington County.”
Approximately half of the Department of Commerce's economic development announcements so far this year have been expansions of existing businesses.
“In a state rich with natural resources, South Carolina's forestry industry is a tremendous economic asset,” said Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt. “As we continue to boost agribusiness in the state, forestry will remain a large driver of that. Canfor is a great partner in growing South Carolina's sustainable forest sector.”
Since January 2011, South Carolina has recruited more than $10 billion in capital investment and more than 28,000 jobs in the manufacturing sector. The state's agriculture and forestry industries contribute a roughly $34 billion economic impact, according to a study commissioned by the Palmetto Agribusiness Council and the Forestry Commission.
“Canfor's decision to expand its operation in Darlington County is welcome news,” said Darlington County Council Chairman Wesley Blackwell. “We are proud of our existing industries and especially pleased when a company like Canfor elects to continue its growth in our County. Darlington County will continue to provide economic opportunities for our citizens.”
Anyone interested in job opportunities with the company should visit Canfor Southern Pine career opportunities website at http://jobs.canforsouthernpine.com.