MetsäWood’s Pärnu mill in the red

The deteriorating plywood market makes it hard to generate profit for Metsäwood’s new plywood mill in Estonia. Plywood production in Pärnu started 2018. During winter 2018-’19, prices and volumes in the birch plywood market started to decrease after several robust years.

The raw material supply in Pärnu is different from plywood mills that peel their own veneer. The veneer mill at Äänekoski, Finland, and the birch plywood mill in Pärnu form a mill complex together.

Finnish logs are peeled at Äänekoski and then transported as veneer to Pärnu for further processing to plywood. The annual plywood production capacity of the Pärnu mill is 50 000 m3. About 1500 truck loads of veneer from Äänekoski are needed to feed that capacity.

According to the Postimees newspaper, in 2019 the Pärnu mill employed an average of 155 people. Their average monthly income was 1,356 euros gross. To cover the increased costs in the future, the company says it is looking to produce more value-added products at Pärnu’s plywood mill.