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Boniferro gets bigger

Eight months after buying Domtar Inc.'s Sault Ste. Marie hardwood operation, Boniferro Mill Works today announced a significant expansion and the hiring of six new employees.
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Eight months after buying Domtar Inc.'s Sault Ste. Marie hardwood operation, Boniferro Mill Works today announced a significant expansion and the hiring of six new employees.

The company announced that it's adding a third saw line, a twin 10-foot band saw that's expected to start operations in mid-December.

The new line will be able to produce up to 46,000 board feet of lumber per shift.

The following announcement was issued today by the company:

**************************************************************** Major expansion and new hiring

Boniferro Mill Works Inc. has undertaken a $1-million expansion program that will significantly increase the Sault Ste. Marie company’s productivity, strengthen its competitive position and lead to the hiring of six new skilled trades employees.

The project involves the installation of a third saw line at the company’s Third Line site.

The state-of-the-art MEM Tele-Twin Scragg saw is manufactured in France by M.E.M. Le Minaret (http://memwood.com/homepagee.htm).

The twin 10-foot band saw will begin operating in mid-December 2003 and be capable of producing up to 46,000 board feet of lumber per shift.

The Ministry of Natural Resources has approved the gain in production capacity as conforming with Boniferro Mill Works’ business plan of record.

Serge Tenaglia, MNR’s district manager for the Sault Ste. Marie area, has advised the mill that, "Your proposed three-line operation falls within your current Ministry-recognized operating level and the log specifications are consistent with your approved business plan, therefore we have no concerns with your proposal."

Boniferro Mill Works Inc. has worked very closely with MNR staff and are very pleased with the support and co-operation they have received to ensure a future for the mill in Sault Ste. Marie.

Site preparations and changes, including renovations to a 4000 square-foot addition adjacent to the company’s hardwood sawmill, are underway.

Local suppliers have been contracted for most of the work.

Stem Engineering has provided design and engineering.

Palmer Paving has poured the footings, foundation and concrete piers.

Rainone Construction and Steel Speed will do the erection work to increase the existing building’s size.

Elteck Electric and Red Star Electric are completing electrical requirements.

Superior Sawmill is fabricating the infeed and outfeed systems, while Braultech Inc. is installing and programming the PLCs, optimizers and electrical instrumentation.

The new saw line will require an additional Chip Pac manufactured by MorBark in Michigan.

Actual installation of the new equipment and related mill modifications are being completed by Boniferro Mill Works Inc. employees led by Butch Ross and Brad McGonegal.

Project manager Bill Maskel of Winnipeg Forest Products is co-ordinating and overseeing all aspects of the expansion.

Boniferro Mill Works purchased the entire Third Line site from Domtar Inc. on March 14 of this year.

The company was formed through a partnership between entrepreneurs Jim Boniferro of Sault Ste. Marie and Tom Fox of Hamilton, Montana.

Mr. Fox is excited about the opportunities the expanded operations will offer.

"Since the purchase of the hardwood mill, Fox Lumber Sales has built strong ties with hardwood customers. They are requesting a wider range of products from us. The new MEM saw will give the mill the flexibility to supply the quality and volume of products our customers are demanding."

The investment further emphasizes the skills of BMWI employees and their dedication to the company’s success.

"When we purchased the company, we believed its strength would not lie in the assets and equipment, but rather in our people," said Mr. Boniferro, the company’s President and CEO.

"The employees have shown a true commitment to their jobs and have worked very hard to ensure continued growth. That is why we are investing in a future together with them."

Boniferro Mill Works currently employs thirty-eight (38) people.

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