February 5, 2007

Boards, member firms approve union of leading Canadian pulp and paper research groups

POINTE-CLAIRE, QUE-The boards and member companies of Canada's three leading forest industry research institutes have voted to merge Forintek, Paprican and FERIC, the Forest Engineering Research Institute of Canada. The new single institute, to be named FPInnovations, will come into being April 1, 2007. The final vote on January 25 was the culmination of a process than began last June when the members of each institute voted in favour of exploring the creation of a new structure to spearhead the activities of the three institutes. In September 2006, Dr Ian de la Roche was named president and CEO of the new structure. "With this vote, the members of the three institutes are sending a clear message that the Canadian forest industry is preparing to face global competition and the economic and environmental challenges currently presented," said Forintek chairman Phil Latos. FERIC chairman Don Banks noted that the new FPInnovations "will provide the Canadian forest industry with one of the world's largest forest sector research institutes." Paprican chairman Frank Dottori added that "FPInnovations will also provide technical direction for the Canadian Forest Service's newly created Fibre Centre. This means that researchers along the entire value chain will be better positioned to support industry in developing the next generation of value-added products." FERIC, a non-profit institute, specializes in areas of research related to the harvesting of wood, transportation and forest road construction, silviculture, and wildland fire operations. Forintek's activities are focused on developing scientific and technical knowledge in areas such as lumber, panels, and other value-added wood products manufacturing processes or attributes, drying and protection, building systems, etc. Paprican's research programs are driven by the high-priority technical issues of the industry such as product quality and value, cost competitiveness, environment and sustainability. More information is available from Terry Knee at FERIC, 514/694-1140, E-mail terry-k@mtl.feric.ca; Norine Young at Forintek, 604/224-3221, E-mail norine@van.forintek.ca; or Yves Nadon at Paprican, 514/630-4136, E-mail ynadon@paprican.ca.

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