Lavern Heideman & Sons was established in 1974 at its current site in Eganville with a single sawmill. Over the years the mill has grown and evolved into one of the major employers in the community and plays a large part in sustainably managing the areas forests. The company is now managed by 2nd and 3rd generations of the Heideman family, Eddie and his son Kris.
The mill underwent a major renovation in 2005 and just last year converted the heating system to an efficient wood pellet furnace. This completes the utilization circle of Heideman’s low-end material – chips and dust are shipped to Trebio, a nearby pellet plant, and Heideman’s purchased these pellets to heat their mill buildings. Literally every speck of dust that comes from each tree gets utilized.
Heideman’s speciality is red pine, not just in the mill but the forest. They meet and exceed stringent harvesting guidelines on both Crown and private land operations, protecting all forest values and ensuring forest health is improved with each harvest. The family started commercially thinning red pine plantations at a time when people were paying to have their plantations thinned and the trees left on the ground because there wasn’t a developed market. Eddie Heideman was the 1999 recipient of National Forest Stewardship Recognition Award, acknowledging his efforts to “practice careful logging, with respect for other forest users, and to ensure that the public is aware of what his operations were trying to achieve. The thinnings he has carried out will certainly result in healthier forests for the future, making him a “model” forest operator.” Heideman’s has become certified in its forest and mill operations, and is also helping other private land owners achieve Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification on their own lands. This third-party auditing process gives assurance to consumers, forest owners and users that the forest is managed for not just economic benefits, keeping ecological and social values protected for future generations. Kris points out that “over 100 people have signed up for our private land management program and trust us to sustainably manage their woodlots.”
Kris Heideman sees tremendous potential for wood in the future, as well as the many benefits of its use. “In 2011 Ontario was a net importer of wood products. This is not necessary. Purchasing locally produced wood products supports local employment and allows for improved management of our most important natural resource. There would be significant environmental and economic benefits if we increase our use of local wood.”
Heideman’s business is mostly wholesale, but they do offer some products on site in smaller quantities. They specialize in red pine and are a major supplier to fellow Ottawa Valley Wood value-added producer, Pastway’s. You can find Pastway finished and/or treated red pine squares at many local hardware stores.
Items for retail:
- Small/rough quantities of miscellaneous sizes for fences/sheds/camps
- Rough Red and White Pine board and batten
- Rough Red Pine and Aspen for strapping and sheeting (unstamped)
You can find Heideman 4x4 and 6x6 pressure treated Red Pine at many local stores that carry Pastway wood products. Be sure to support your local forest industry and ask for local wood when shopping at hardware stores.
Forest Management Services are also available, including forest operation planning, FSC certificate achievement, woodlot inventory, plantation thinning and other harvesting.