Lumber producer Idaho Forest Group is locating sawmill operations in Lumberton in Lamar County. The project is a $120 million corporate investment and will create up to 135 jobs.
“With millions of acres of forestland available to agribusiness leaders such as Idaho Forest Group, Mississippi has experienced significant growth in this vital economic sector in recent months,” Gov. Tate Reeves said. “I thank the team at Idaho Forest Group for choosing to locate in our great state. The company’s prime location in the Pine Belt Region, combined with the area’s skilled pipeline of workers, will play an important role in its continued success for many years to come.”
Headquartered in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, IFG currently operates six sawmills and a finger-joint plant at locations in Idaho and Montana. IFG sources logs from across the Inland Northwest and is committed to collaborating with landowners, including federal and state agencies, to bring value to their lands. The company manufactures, markets and distributes a variety of lumber products to consumers predominantly across North America and has the capacity to produce more than 1 billion board feet per year, making it one of the country’s largest lumber producers.
The Lumberton advanced manufacturing facility will produce a variety of wood products. The new jobs include mill supervisors, information technology and human resources staff, engineers, technicians and operators, all of which will be recruited from the local area. IFG is working closely with Pearl River Community College on several workforce training initiatives. Details about training and employment opportunities will be available in early 2021.
“We are pleased to have the confidence of the Lamar County leadership,” said Marc Brinkmeyer, Owner & CEO of Idaho Forest Group.
The Mississippi Development Authority is providing assistance for site preparation and rail upgrades. Lamar County and the city of Lumberton also are assisting with the project.
“Mississippi is a top state for companies like Idaho Forest Group that need access to an abundance of timberland and an optimal transportation network to successfully produce and distribute their lumber products to domestic and international markets,” said MDA Interim Director John Rounsaville. “MDA is proud to partner with Idaho Forest Group as the company brings so many new jobs to South Mississippi. We thank the teams at the Area Development Partnership, the Lamar County Board of Supervisors and the city of Lumberton for their hard work in bringing this project to realization.”
“Our community was founded on the very resource that remains a key to our livelihood today,” said Lamar County Board of Supervisors President Warren Byrd. “We are grateful for IFG’s confidence in our community, and we look forward to many years of strong partnership with this great company.”
“This is the most exciting news we’ve received in Lumberton in quite some time, and we are thrilled that IFG has chosen Lumberton as their new home in the Southeast U.S.,” said Lumberton Mayor Quincy Rogers.
IFG plans to begin construction on the new sawmill in early 2021 and expects it to be operational in 2022.