B.C’s tree planting industry is facing several major obstacles as it strives to survive in the future.
After a summit meeting in Kamloops, the Executive Director of the Western Forestry Contractors Association John Betts says the most significant challenge is recruitment and retention of workers.
Betts says this comes at a time when tree planters will be in great demand and it boils down to money.
“We have to put a lot of distance between what people can make with today’s minimum wage and the proposed increases which will carry it up to 180. We have got to get that wage well above that, possibly 250 to 300 a day. This is hard work. This is people working at industrial athlete levels.”
The current workforce numbers are around seven to ten thousand.