Paper and Packaging Slowdown Impacts Wood Fiber Prices

By Brooks Mendell and Stephen Wright
Biomass Magazine
July 6, 2023
Category: Finance & Economics
Region: Canada, United States

The ongoing paper and packaging slowdown reached into a third consecutive quarter and contributed to falling wood fiber prices across much of North America in Q2 2023. High inflation cooled consumer demand for goods, and paper mills are drawing down finished goods inventories to match current demand levels. The market still fears a recession could be in the future, so caution is dictating most operations. Through early 2023, paper mill closures across North America trimmed production capacity in response to the slowdown. According to the Wood Fiber Review, fiber prices in most regions trended down, unlike the wide range of regional differences just months ago. …Historically high wood fiber prices in the Northwest and Northeast U.S. dipped over 10% for the quarter. In the U.S., only the Lake States reported higher softwood fiber prices, as western Canadian prices inched higher as well. Hardwood prices increased in both the Lake States and the U.S. Northwest.

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