Spruce Wood Loggers Inc was founded in 1981 by Arnold & Lorraine Reimer. The company was started as primarily a way of sustaining the farm during the winter months cutting pulpwood logs for the Pinefalls paper mill. In 1984, Arnold along with his father, Frank Reimer, started milling to gain some extra value out of the large diameter logs in the form of timbers and rough lumber for the construction industry. In 1993 the sawmill was relocated to its present location in a more permanent fashion. Small upgrades continued for the several years including a temporary roof, then a permanent roof, hydraulic controls on the carriage. Even a R model Mack engine was brought in to eliminate the PTO tractor.
In 2002 the Pinefalls paper mill announced the termination of pulp log purchasing as they changed to a wood-chip-only purchasing plan, forcing Spruce Wood Loggers to look at an alternative for the small diameter wood that was being shipped to Pinefalls. The decision was made to set up a small log line equipped with chipping heads eliminating the slabs and edgings that were sold as firewood. The new log line had the ability to process the log to lumber in one flow through pass making utilizing the small diameter timber much more economical. All undersized wood bypassed the saws directly to the chipper.
The new sawmill was now completely powered by electric motors. With being over 10kms from a 3-phase power line a diesel generator was set up as the most cost-effective start-up option. The “new” mill bought from various sawmill auctions served well. Through beginning of the new millennium little changed after a failed attempt of breaking into the planed lumber market in 2005. Along with some marketing challenges that occurred through tariffs and recession. As the company established itself in a new market small upgrades and changes were made until 2018. In 2018, Arnold together with two of his sons were ready to face the next challenge. The changing biomass industry was forcing Spruce Wood Loggers into a new industry, namely wood pellets. The wood pellets would utilize the sawdust that was becoming increasingly difficult to “market” as well as make use of the chips that had become further from market and dwindled in price all the while tightened on specs.
The new pellet plant would nearly double the current electricity demand, making the long time uneconomical 3 phase power line a new reality. A chip storage building, and plant building were set up in summer and equipment install began in the fall into winter. After numerous delays on the drying line delivery, finally in June of 2019 the first pellets pressed through the die. Numerous challenges were faced with the new technology drying line.
As the new drying line has been installed, the four shareholders are already looking at new market opportunities in value added lumber products.