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Interfor's TrendWatch - See what we're seeing

Our leadership team has deep expertise and a bold vision. Find out about our take on evolving trends and patterns in the industry, and how we are carving out a solid, strategic future for our company. 

Building a Future with First Nations

Bob Craven, Manager, Economic Partnerships, Coastal Woodlands

August 10, 2017

Interfor was proud to sponsor the 25th Tribal Journeys in Campbell River, BC August 5. Tribal Journeys is an annual cultural event that brings First Nations families together by canoe to share, learn and preserve their traditions.

Host nations, Wei Wai Kum and We Wai Kai – of Campbell River and Quadra Island – respectively, welcomed 2500 First Nations pullers in 125 canoes from territories along the Pacific Coast, and the world.

The theme of this year’s Tribal Journeys – Standing Together – has special significance for Interfor. We have been operating on BC’s coast for more than 50 years, and our success has been grounded in our partnerships with First Nations.

It was an honour to support and participate in Tribal Journeys. Interfor employees and their families helped prepare 5000 brown-bag lunches for the canoe pullers and hauled the canoes off of the beach at day’s end.

We were also proud to work with Coast Salish artist Shain Jackson of Spirit Works who designed the podium.

Millwright Apprenticeship Program – Building Value for Employees: Grow, Prosper & Contribute

Mark Stock, Senior Vice President, Human Resources
May 24, 2017

Twenty-seven employees are on their way towards becoming certified Interfor Journey Millwrights.

Interfor’s Millwright Apprenticeship Program is a three-year program to support career development at our mills in the US South. The program addresses a critical shortage of skilled maintenance technicians in the region.

The program is an investment in our people and our infrastructure that aligns with our business strategy to build value by delivering operational excellence. Apprentices will earn while they learn, without having to leave their homes and families for extended periods of time.

Training officially starts June 5 and has three major components: online training, classroom instruction and mentored, on-the-job work experience. Interfor will deliver the program with the support of The Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT), Charles Black & Associates and the Central Georgia Technical College.

Best of luck to the class of 2020!
 

Consolidation of Sales & Marketing Offices Improves Our Service for Customers

Bart Bender, Senior Vice President, Sales & Marketing
May 1, 2017

Today Interfor completes an internal consolidation of two western sales offices that streamlines sales and logistics processes, improves customer service and enhances our platform for future growth.

Our Bellingham, WA and Metrotown (Burnaby, BC) offices are now aligned under one roof – at Metrotown. The new active trading floor is home to Interfor’s Cedar, Export and Western Commodity, Specialty Sales, and Logistics teams.

Our vision was to create a cohesive team that could benefit from the easy flow and sharing of market information on one floor. Having support services such as IT, Human Resources and Finance all based at the same location further supports the team’s success.

Interfor customers also reap the benefits. With export activities consolidated, the collective team has a perspective on overseas markets, meaning we are better positioned to offer global expertise to our customers.

TED2017 Conference Looks to the Future - and Features Interfor Lumber

Bart Bender, Senior Vice President, Sales & Marketing
April 27, 2017

Interfor is once again proud to donate quality Douglas-Fir lumber from our Adams Lake mill in British Columbia for an outdoor pavilion at TED2017 in Vancouver. It’s a great way to reflect the TED2017 theme – The Future You.

Wood has an important role to play in our shared future, and the temporary pavilion, known as PAUSE, offers a place of reflection and interaction for the world’s 1,000 top thinkers and doers who are attending the sold-out conference from April 24 to 28.

PAUSE overlooks Vancouver’s magnificent harbor and mountains. It was designed by Alsu Sadrieva who won an international wood design competition led by DBR │Design Build Research, a non-profit institute that teaches the design and construction of socially, culturally and environmentally relevant student-led installations. DBR was co-founded by award-winning Vancouver architect Michael Green who has long been a bold advocate for wood. In 2013, he gave a TED talk on Why we should build wooden skyscrapers.

Wood -- the ultimate natural, renewable and strong building material -- fits perfectly with the TED2017 theme. Thanks to advances in wood products and technologies, it represents the future for sustainable construction. When Brock Commons, a student residence at the University of British Columbia, opens later this year it will be the world’s tallest timber structure – and Interfor provided a third of the lumber.

It’s always an honor to be part of TED, which has shared cutting-edge ideas since 1984. Speakers this year include Tesla’s Elon Musk, tennis star Serena Williams, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Microsoft’s Paul Allen and Google’s Larry Page. In 2014, Interfor provided Hem-Fir and Western Red Cedar for TED’s community stage, and we partnered with DBR to build the Lions Marquee in 2015 with Douglas-Fir lumber. This year, PAUSE is expected to become a legacy project, which means it will continue to be enjoyed by the people of Vancouver for years to come.
 

 

Connecting with International Customers

Bart Bender, Senior Vice President, Sales & Marketing
September 16, 2016

Recently, Interfor showcased our broad line of lumber products at the 13th Annual BC Wood Global Buyers Mission in Whistler, British Columbia. Over 800 delegates from 18 countries attended the event. Our team had numerous opportunities to interact with potential and current customers through the course of the mission.  

Our Hammond Division in Maple Ridge hosted a group of Korean buyers and our Acorn Division in Delta hosted a group of Taiwanese and Hong Kong buyers. Tour attendees were impressed with our top-quartile mills and the quality products manufactured at each facility.

Many buyers stopped to talk to our Export Sales & Marketing team at the Interfor booth to learn about our Western Dimension, Western Red Cedar, Specialty and Southern Yellow Pine lumber products. International buyers also learned how we manage our own supply chain and logistics, which means we control the process from the stump to our customers’ yard.

International markets are a key part of Interfor’s business – with over 15% of our volume (by value) shipped outside of North America. We always look for ways to interact with our customers to understand their needs so we can earn their business. If you are an international buyer and are interested in purchasing Interfor’s quality lumber, please contact our Export Sales & Marketing team at exportsales [at] interfor.com (subject: Interfor%20Lumber%20Request) or +1-604-422-3468.

 

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