Balcas has a number of facilities all over Europe, including a sawmill in Estonia that also produces wood for construction. A pellet plant is currently under construction in Scotland. Balcas has branded its wood pellets brites.
For sawmills in Ireland, “electricity is a huge cost”—up to eight times the 6 cents per kilowatt hour paid in B.C. This sparked the development of brites. Balcas’s first residential sales were in 2006, and in 2008 “we had to import to meet the markets we’d developed,” Smith said.