Norbord Plant becomes world's largest - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Norbord Plant becomes world's largest

June 15, 2005

Cordele- Norbord, Incorporated will double the size of its Cordele plant and add 75 new jobs. The expansion could have a positive impact on much of South Georgia.

Cordele has long been known as the Watermelon Capitol of the World. Soon, the city could also be known as the world's largest producer of OSB.

"We've come very close recently in the last year or so and have missed out at the end of some economic development opportunities and so this is extremely good," said Governor Sonny Perdue.

Oriented Strand Board is made when pine trees are flaked, laid out in the proper dimensions, dried of all moisture, chemically treated and then pressed together into boards used in the construction of new homes. South Georgia seems to be a perfect fit both for workers and for its supporting industries.

"Here's a plant that's already here employing over 100 people and they're going to increase their numbers of employed to over 200. In the immediate area, it's going to mean another 200 jobs because of production," said Ferrell Henry, Crisp County Commissioner.

The second line, constructed over the next year, will produce more than the current line and will require more workers and more resources.

"The farmers, the timber growers, have a better market for their product and to have the largest plant right here in Crisp County in the middle of Georgia. In an area known for pine tree growing, this is really good news," said Perdue.

"The Cordele mill has quickly become our best performing business in North America. That's a credit to Avery Smith our General Manager of Norbord Georgia and the 125 dedicated members that are the heart and soul of our mill here," said Barrie Shineton, Norbord, President and CEO.

"We work so good together, we're hard working, we've got such a good management team so I think that's really why they chose Cordele," said Kemuel Taylor, Production Technician.

Plant workers were pleased by the expansion plans.

"For a company to come in like this and do such a great thing such as expanding the way that they are, oh yeah, we're very proud," said Taylor.

Norbord supplies the OSB to companies like Home Depot and Lowes.

The company bought the Cordele Plant in 2002. It produces one billion square feet of OSB annually. The company got tax breaks and incentives both from county and state to make the expansion possible.

feedback: news@walb.com