The Globe and Mail reports in its Thursday edition that West Fraser Timber produced more softwood last year in the U.S. South than it did in Canada as the Vancouver-based company kept its position as North America's top lumber producer. The Globe's Brent Jang writes that West Fraser, which acquired the Angelina sawmill in Lufkin, Tex., in late 2021, now has 22 lumber mills across eight states in the U.S. South. Last year, the company produced 3.02 billion board feet of lumber in the U.S. to rank as the second-largest producer south of the border, moving ahead of Sierra Pacific Industries of Anderson, Calif. By operating directly in the U.S., West Fraser and other Canadian producers have found a detour around U.S. lumber tariffs, which are imposed on softwood shipments originating from Canada and sold to American buyers. Since 2014, lumber capacity has surged in the U.S. South while production tumbled in B.C. amid timber supply constraints in the province, said wood business consultant Russ Taylor. West Fraser's U.S. lumber production rose 13 per cent last year, while its Canadian output fell 17 per cent. West Fraser remains the largest lumber producer in Canada, at 2.64 billion board feet of output last year.
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