Sawmill begins operations, will provide feedstock to pellet plant

By Erin Voegele | May 31, 2019

The new $115 million LaSalle Lumber Co. LLC facility was dedicated in Urania, Louisiana, May 29. The sawmill will provide residual wood waste from its lumber operations to Drax Biomass’s adjacent LaSalle Bioenergy pellet plant.

The sawmill project is a joint venture or Hunt Forest Products and British Columbia-based Tolko Industries. It produced its first commercial shipment of lumber in March. The sawmill will source approximately 850,000 tons of wood per year and produce about 200 million board feet of lumber annually. The adjacent Drax Biomass facility produces wood pellets that are shipped to the Port of Grater Baton Rouge, destined to fuel power generation in the U.K.

“LaSalle Lumber Company, which complements the LaSalle BioEnergy plant, represents the resurgence of a great forest products manufacturing center for which this region of our state is well-known,” said Gov. John Bel Edwards. “We congratulate Hunt Forest Products and its Canadian partner, Tolko Industries, for their wise investment in a technologically sophisticated sawmill that draws on the great forestry resources of this region’s timber landowners and dedicated workforce. We view this project as a great next-generation investment in our sustainable forest products industry.”