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Daily News / Global Trends / Market Analysis / Forestry / Lumber / Sawmilling / Statistics / Wood Products / Global / North America
July 18, 2019

Rising softwood lumber production for U.S. sawmills, while Canadian output drops sharply

Rising softwood lumber production for U.S. sawmills, while Canadian output drops sharply

Softwood lumber production by U.S. sawmills in the first four months of 2019 was 11.718 billion board ft. (bbf), an increase of 0.9% from 11.616 bbf a year earlier, while Canadian sawmills produced 8.588 bbf of softwood lumber in the first four months, down 8.8% from 9.421 bbf a year earlier

Western U.S. sawmills accounted for 4.797 bbf of the four-month total, down 1.8% from 4.883 bbf a year earlier, while production at southern U.S. sawmills increased, by 3.0% to 6.370 bbf from 6.186 bbf last year.

In April, U.S. sawmills produced 3.044 bbf, a year-over-year increase of 0.6% from 3.025 bbf, and up 7.3% from output In March 2019 of 2.836 bbf.

Western sawmills contributed 1.258 bbf to April’s total, a year-over-year increase of 2.2% from 1.232 bbf, and up 7.1% from the previous month’s volume of 1.175 bbf.

Sawmills in the South contributed 1.642 bbf, down 0.5% from 1.651 bbf a year earlier, but up 7.5% from production of 1.527 bbf in March 2019.

Apparent U.S. softwood lumber consumption advanced 1.9% in the four-month period to 15.968 bbf from 15.676 bbf in the previous year. In April, consumption was 4.387 bbf, a 5.0% increase from last year’s 4.180 bbf, and up 10.1% from consumption in March 2019 of 3.986 bbf.

Canadian softwood lumber production/consumption

Canadian sawmills produced 8.588 bbf of softwood lumber in the first four months, down 8.8% from 9.421 bbf a year earlier. Much of the decline was in British Columbia, where output plunged 16.2% to 3.587 bbf from 4.279 at the same time last year. Production by sawmills East of the Rockies also fell, by 2.7% to 5.001 bbf from 5.142 bbf.

Production in April alone was 2.206 bbf, a year-over-year decline of 9.4% from 2.437 bbf in April 2018, and 4.0% lower than production in March 2019 of 2.299 bbf.

Sawmills in British Columbia contributed 903 million board ft. (mmbf) to Canada’s April production, a drop of 20.3% from 1.134 bbf in April last year. Compared to production in March this year of 958 mmbf, output by mills in British Columbia was down 5.7%.

Sawmills east of the Rockies produced 1.303 bbf in April, level with April 2018 but down 2.8% from 1.340 bbf in the previous month.

Apparent Canadian softwood lumber consumption for the four-month period plunged 16.1% to 2.786 bbf from 3.321 bbf last year. Consumption in April alone was 573 mmbf, down 34.7% from 878 mmbf in April 2018, and 12.8% lower than consumption in March 2019 of 657 mmbf.

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