Roseburg Forest Products laid off approximately 90 employees at its plywood plant in Dillard on Friday morning.
Rebecca Taylor, a spokeswoman for the company, said continued unfavorable conditions in the North American plywood market contributed to the decision.
The company was able to extend immediate job offers to approximately 50 of the affected employees for roles at the company’s other wood products plant. Those employees will retain seniority, benefits and will have “recall rights” to return to their position at the Dillard location if their position reopens.
The company will consider the 40 employees who were not offered transfers first for positions if they open up. Employees will learn more at crew meetings at the plant throughout the day.
“After waiting for months for markets to improve, we have reached the point where a layoff is necessary to better match supply with weakened demand,” Senior RFP Vice President of Operations Jake Elston said in a press release. “Slow housing starts, imported plywood, and increased competition from OSB manufacturers are all driving the imbalance in the market.
“This is an unfortunate but necessary step toward preserving the long-term viability of our plywood business.”
Taylor said the company tried to correct the market imbalance with temporary plant shutdowns over the week of the Fourth of July, but it wasn’t enough.
“They definitely have seen some market trends affecting the plant,” Taylor said. “But, as far as this announcement, it was first made today.”
The plywood plant had close to 350 employees before Friday morning’s layoffs and transfers.
Most of the layoffs came from the softwood plywood team. All of the softwood plywood dryer shifts and softwood plywood relief and night shifts for layup lines were laid off, Taylor said.