Tembec develops “very high” viscosity cellulose grade Biofloc XV20 After several months of laboratory work by the research and development team in Bordeaux, France, Tembec says it has developed a very high viscosity cellulose grade. In August, the production of this new grade, called Biofloc XV20, took place at the Tartas Specialty Cellulose mill in France. “It is a tremendous success because a new world record for viscosity of a wood pulp was achieved,” said Tembec in a company statement. Tembec, describing itself as the world leader in specialty cellulose for use in the production of cellulose ethers, says it responded to the needs of its main customers. “This new product can now compete directly with cotton linter pulp and opens new opportunities for our customers,” said Christian Ribeyrolle, executive vice-president of the Specialty Cellulose Group. “Our customers in this segment needed a replacement for cotton linter pulp by a product which is less affected by market cycles but is of equivalent quality. Biofloc XV20 is now part of our product portfolio.” Many customers have expressed a strong interest in Biofloc XV20 and the product will be shipped from the Tembec Tartas warehouse shortly, noted the manufacturer. Canfor Pulp invests in Northwood and Taylor pulp mill energy projects Canfor Pulp Products plans to undertake capital projects at its Northwood Northern Bleached Softwood Kraft (NBSK) Pulp mill located in Prince George, B.C., and its Bleached Chemi-Thermo Mechanical Pulp (BCTMP) mill located in Taylor, B.C. The Northwood project will install a new 32 MW condensing turbo-generator for an estimated cost of $65 million, said Canfor Pulp Products, adding that the Taylor BCTMP project will upgrade the refining line for an estimated cost of $40 million. The Taylor project will be partially funded through BC Hydro’s conservation program incentives. According to Canfor Pulp, these projects will yield a “significant improvement” in overall mill energy efficiency and will reduce total fuel consumption. The sustaining benefits of the projects will also include reductions in mill water use, steam use per tonne of pulp and natural gas consumption. “These projects reflect Canfor Pulp’s commitment to sustainable pulp production while continuing to improve the cost competitiveness of our pulp mills,” said Brett Robinson, president Canfor Pulp. Fortress Paper’s Yvon Pelletier to retire After 36 years in the forestry industry, including nearly five years at Fortress Paper, Yvon Pelletier retired from the company on October 1. Reassuming the role of president and CEO is Chadwick Wasilenkoff, in addition to his current position as chairman of the board. Wasilenkoff is the founder and served as president and CEO from June 2006 to September 2015. He has founded, financed and held executive and board positions with several publicly traded companies in Canada. He also sits on the board of the deans advisory at the University of British Columbia. “I would like to thank the whole team at Fortress for sharing these past five years of my career with me. With the addition of Giovanni Iadeluca to Thurso’s operations and Mr. Wasilenkoff’s full-time involvement, I am confident that I am leaving the company in good hands for the next stage of improvement and growth,” Pelletier said. Pelletier was named CEO of Fortress Paper on Oct. 1, 2015. He previously held the position of president of Fortress Specialty Cellulose since February 2013. Prior to joining Fortress Paper, Pelletier was the executive vice-president of Tembec. New Cascades plant to produce PRO towel, tissue products Cascades has inaugurated its new 284,000-square-foot tissue converting facility in Scappoose, Ore. “The Scappoose facility will also allow us to increase our converting capacity and integration rate as we will be using tissue paper produced at our St.-Helens plant located just eight miles away,” said Mario Plourde, Cascades president and CEO. The new US$64-million plant — which manufactures towel and tissue products under the Cascades PRO brand — is equipped with “best-in-class converting lines, high-speed rewinders and folders, and one of the fastest bath lines in the world,” Cascades says. The line includes hand towels, bathroom tissue, napkins, kitchen roll towels, facial tissue, wipers and dispensers. The plant is estimated to produce nearly six million cases per year of virgin and recycled bathroom tissue products and paper hand towels. Irving announces US$400-million Georgia tissue plant Irving Consumer Products has announced it will expand its United States business operations with the construction of a new US$400-million tissue plant in Macon, Ga. Expected to create more than 200 jobs, the new plant will allow the company to double its ThruAir Dry capacity, increasing it by 75,000 tonnes, the equivalent of 15 million cases, it says. It will be a total of 700,000 square feet. “We’re looking forward to building a strong relationship with the wonderful people of this community,” said Robert K. Irving, Irving Consumer Products president. “Selecting Macon for our new facility provides us with an opportunity to establish a footprint in a region that has proven itself as being a strong supporter of business. It will allow us to reach key markets, and will help to continue to drive our growth. This expansion is possible because of the commitment of our employees, customers and suppliers.” The company says engineering and planning for the facility is well underway. Construction commenced this summer and is scheduled to be completed in 2019, providing roughly 1,000,000 person hours of work. At the height of construction, more than 540 people will be working onsite, says the company. In November 2016, Irving Consumer Products announced the purchase of a new ThruAir Dry machine, which will be installed at the new facility in Macon. Part of the J.D. Irving Group of Companies, Irving Consumer Products Ltd. is a manufacturer of premium quality private label and store brand household paper products, baby diapers, and children’s training pants. Catalyst launches Trident label paper Catalyst Paper, headquartered in Vancouver, B.C., has launched Trident, a wetstrength label paper produced at its Rumford mill in Maine. Trident is a full wet-strength label paper for application on water bottles, craft beer, juice bottles, wine bottles and large format containers. Available in 47 and 60 pound basis weights (lbs. per 3,300 ft2), Trident is sustainably produced with available chain-of-custody certification under the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) and Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) standards. “As we strive to expand our portfolio of value-added, paperbased solutions for our specialty customers, we are excited to introduce Trident, our new wet-strength label paper,” said Brian Boland, vice president, Specialty Papers & New Product Development. “Not only does this launch further demonstrate our commitment to the label market, it offers a durable beverage label with excellent wet opacity, printability and labelling speed that will satisfy the needs of both converters and brand owners.” The introduction of Trident follows Catalyst’s recent re-launch of Rumford Offset, and additional specialty products including Glide Graphics release liner base papers, the Leap family of lightweight food flexible packaging papers and the Bistro line of food service papers. New name, focus for Canada’s longest-running bioenergy event The International Bioenergy Conference and Exhibition is being reborn as the Canadian Bioeconomy Conference and Exhibition. The new name reflects a growth in the use of woody biomass from legacy industries such as wood pellet production and cogeneration to a full menu of products such as biofuels, biogas, biochemicals, biopharmaceuticals and other bioproducts. “The original name and mandate were chosen to focus attention on the emerging bioenergy industry in northern B.C. and on creating a venue for Canadian wood pellet producers to connect and network with their customers and colleagues in other parts of the world,” explained Jim Martin, chair of the board of directors of the conference.' “The bioenergy industry in Canada has grown and matured since we founded the conference in 2004. We felt it was important that, as the leading conference of its kind in Canada, we should reflect the diversification in the use of woody biomass across the full value chain of bioproducts.” North-Central British Columbia continues to be the largest producing region in Canada of wood pellets, and one of the largest in the world. It is home to Pinnacle Renewable Energy, Pacific Bioenergy and Premium Pellets, as well as to some of the longest-operating pulp mill cogeneration facilities in North America and a number of district energy systems. But with projects such as the groundbreaking Canfor- Licella biofuels project in conference host city Prince George, the industry is now moving quickly toward new technologies and new innovations in wood-based products that are fuelling the new bioeconomy. The new conference will continue its predecessor’s legacy of excellence in showcasing the innovation of the companies, organizations and researchers who make Canada a global leader of the bioeconomy. “The Canadian Bioeconomy Conference and Exhibition will build on the success of the International Bioenergy Conference,” Martin said. “We will continue to bring expertise from around the globe to share knowledge and best practices with Canadian industry members, and to demonstrate Prince George’s and northern B.C.’s leadership role in the Canadian bioeconomy.” “Prince George is one of the most diversified and important forestry communities in Canada and continued innovation and leadership in this sector is critical to our economic development,” said Prince George Mayor Lyn Hall. “We’re delighted to be hosting the Canadian Bioeconomy Conference and Exhibition next June.” In addition to being home to numerous pellet companies, pulp and paper and cogeneration facilities, Prince George is also home to a wood-based district energy system connecting eleven buildings through its downtown, including the conference venue. In addition, bioenergy facilities at the Prince George campus of the University of Northern British Columbia are venues for research and have reduced the University’s consumption of fossil fuels for heating by about 85 per cent. The new Canadian Bioeconomy Conference and Exhibition will take place in Prince George June 6-8, 2018. Register at www.bioeconomyconference.com “World’s most modern” tissue R&D centre set to open next year Andritz says it will open the “world’s most modern research and development centre for tissue,” the PrimeLineTIAC Tissue Innovation and Application Center, at its Graz, Austria, location next March. The research centre boasts a state-of-the-art tissue production line, including laboratory facilities for tests and trials to develop new products and processes in the tissue sector. It is available to tissue producers and to suppliers, research and development companies, and universities. As well, customers and developers can conduct tests and trials under different conditions, for example to optimize fibres and furnish for a specific product, improve product qualities, increase dryness, and reduce energy consumption. The impact of variables such as stock preparation, chemicals, vacuum, machine clothing, pressing, and drying with hot air and steam can all be measured and evaluated accurately, says the company. Customers can bring along their own team of specialists, or discuss and collaborate with Andritz experts from the R&D, stock preparation, machine design and engineering, automation and pumps departments. According to the company, final test runs for the centre are currently in progress. The various partners for this project include Albany International Corp., Danfoss Drives, Fibria, IBS Paper Performance Group, Nash, Södra, and Solenis. The PrimeLineTIAC is sponsored by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency FFG as part of its R&D infrastructure promotion. Andritz says the PrimeLineTIAC has its own complete stock preparation line together with the approach flow system, and that many different kinds of pulp can be processed in one production line, which is split into a separate short fibre and long fibre line. All units are available in small industrial scale, “creating an excellent environment for best possible fibre treatment and tests according to the individual needs of customers and products,” notes the technology company. Meanwhile, the tissue production line promises to offer “utmost flexibility” for the production of conventional, textured, and structured (TAD) tissue, featuring eight configurations that are also available on the market as single-machine concepts. Flexible monitoring and controlling of the configurations as well as the stock preparation system, including alarm management, online documentation, and eco-monitoring, are made possible by PrimeControl automation hardware and software, says Andritz. As a result, customers can run trials with what could potentially be their future machine configurations. With a design speed of 2,500 m/min and a sheet width of 600 mm, the machine can be operated with a suction press roll or a shoe press, a regular CrescentFormer or a vertical CrescentFormer, and with a 16 foot. steel Yankee or two 14 foot. TAD drums. The pumping systems are highly automated and are monitored to not only control operations, but also gather and report important process data under different operating conditions, it adds. Florida mill selected for Georgia- Pacific’s US$400-million investment Georgia-Pacific has selected its Palatka, Fla., mill for the company’s previously announced investment of more than US$400 million in its GP Consumer (retail) tissue and towel business. Investments to the Palatka mill include building a new paper machine using through-air-dried (TAD) technology, as well as adding associated converting equipment and infrastructure. Engineering and related work is beginning immediately, and startup of the upgraded operation is scheduled for 2019. About 80 jobs will be created to operate the new paper making complex, in addition to the mill’s 850 current employees. An average of 160 construction and contract-related workers are expected to be onsite every day during the project, with a potential peak of 700 contract workers per day at the height of construction. The Palatka mill operates two kraft paper machines, three paper machines manufacturing paper for bath tissue and paper towels, and converting operations that produce finished paper products. The improvements will allow Georgia- Pacific’s current and potential customers to grow their premium private label towel brands, as well as expand the company’s Brawny premium paper towel brand. “This upgrade to our operations in Florida underscores our long history of investment in the state by Georgia- Pacific and Koch companies,” said Christian Fischer, Georgia-Pacific president and CEO. “We appreciate the ongoing support of the local community, Putnam County and state officials in our efforts to continue making our Palatka mill more competitive for the longterm.” “This significant investment demonstrates our commitment to GP’s consumer business, our hard-working teams and our current and potential customers,” said Kathy Walters, group president – Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products Group. NORPAC reorganizes operations in face of Canadian-subsidized competition In an effort to stay competitive in the face of Canadian governmentsubsidized competition, the North Pacific Paper Company (NORPAC) has announced it will reorganize its operations. This October, the company plans to reduce its production capacity by idling one of its three paper machines and expanding the remaining capacity to serve customers. “As we seek to level the playing field under U.S. trade laws to counteract the dumped and subsidized imports from Canada, NORPAC will become a nimbler, stronger supplier to our customers by reorganizing around our two remaining paper machines,” said Craig Anneberg, CEO of NORPAC. “Our company is constantly working to improve both our products and operations to remain competitive despite unfair import pricing and Canadian governmentsubsidized competition.” He explained that NORPAC will use “all the tools at its disposal” under the U.S. trade law to address and counteract the dumped and subsidized imports from Canada. The reorganization and expansion of capacity for its remaining paper machines follows NORPAC’s filing on Aug. 9, 2017, of antidumping and countervailing duty petitions with the U.S. government. “All of our employees have dedicated their careers to making NORPAC what it is today — one of the finest paper mills in the world known for quality, service and innovation. The closure of a paper machine has been a very difficult decision for everyone involved,” Anneberg added. “We will do everything in our power to make sure our teams of employees have a level playing field to compete in the future. “As we move forward, we will engage our teams in transition planning, which will include transition resources for impacted NORPAC employees.” Resolute names Patrice Minguez tissue group president Resolute Forest Products has named Patrice Minguez president of the tissue group. In this newly created role and as a member of the Resolute executive team, Minguez will oversee all tissue operations as well as sales and marketing functions. This includes the Atlas Tissue operations in Florida and the new tissue and converting facilities at Calhoun, Tenn. He will also be accountable for the Calhoun pulp and paper mill. Founder and former president of Cellynne Holdings, Minguez has positioned Cellynne as a global independent tissue converter in North America. In addition to his background selling both away-from-home and at-home bath tissue and towel, Minguez has led the installation and start-up of new tissue machines, and managed multiple production locations. “Patrice Minguez has a strong reputation in the marketplace and a proven track record of success. His knowledge, experience and entrepreneurial background will strengthen Resolute’s presence in the tissue market,” Garneau said. “Patrice will play an important role in the company’s ongoing transformation strategy. Garneau says Resolute believes the tissue business will be “positioned for sustained growth and performance” under Minguez’s leadership.
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