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Rottneros decides on environmental investments at Vallvik Mill

Rottneros decides on environmental investments at Vallvik Mill  (Company news)

Rottneros’ Board has decided on investments to reduce emissions to water at Vallvik Mill (photo). The investments amount to a total of SEK 33 million and are linked to the mill's updated environmental permit, which has now gained legal force, allowing an annual pulp production of 255,000 tons.

The decision means that a number of measures will be taken to reduce emissions to water. They will be implemented during the mill's annual maintenance shutdown in 2021. The majority of them are aimed at increasing the proportion of emissions treated in the mill's biological treatment plant, as well as improving the efficiency of the fiberline and thereby minimizing emissions from the bleaching process.

"The investments mean that the Group takes further important steps towards a more sustainable Rottneros and that the process for a renewed environmental permit for Vallvik Mill is completed," says Lennart Eberleh, President and CEO, Rottneros.
(Rottneros AB (publ))

Finland: EIB supports environmental conversion of Stora Enso mill

Finland: EIB supports environmental conversion of Stora Enso mill  (Company news)

-EIB signs €150 million loan with Stora Enso, to convert a paper mill in Oulu, Finland, from production of printing paper to making packaging materials of unbleached pulp.
-The project has an important climate change mitigation angle, in that it makes more use of sustainable raw materials to replace fossil-based materials and generates renewable energy.

Photo: Oulu Mill (© Stora Enso)

The European Investment Bank has signed a € 150 million loan agreement with Finnish renewable materials company Stora Enso. The financing will support the conversion of a former pulp and paper mill in the Finnish city of Oulu, from production of wood-free coated printing paper, into packaging board manufacturing mainly for the food and beverage sector, consistent with Stora Enso’s strategic shift towards packaging made of sustainable and renewable resources.

The financing also covers upgrades in the pulp mill to produce unbleached brown pulp used for the production of packaging board. This conversion comes with significant changes and improvements to the treatment of malodorous gases and wastewater, further enhancing the environmental performance of the mill. The project will also produce renewable energy. The renewable energy generated in the mill aims to increase plant’s overall self-sufficiency from the current 66% to 88%, thus substituting fossil-based energy, contributing to net emissions reductions of 42.8 kT CO2e/year.

EIB Vice-President Thomas Östros stated: “This conversion sends an important signal: We can renew and change processes and production facilities, to reflect new requirements and changes in the market demand.There the EIB, as the EU’s climate bank, will continue to play an important role in supporting the projects

Stora Enso’s SVP Group Treasurer Pasi Kyckling said: “We have good and long standing relationship with the European Investment Bank. We are delighted that the EIB is supporting the conversion of Oulu graphic paper mill to kraftliner. The conversion is an important step in our journey as a renewable materials company.”

The reason for this modernisation is to deliver effective and sustainable solutions for combatting global problems such as plastic waste, by substituting fossil-based materials (plastics) with renewable, recyclable and compostable materials in packaging and consumer goods manufacturing. Market studies indicate that renewable wood-fibres are about 65% less emissions intensive than plastics.
(EIB European Investment Bank)

Management change in Kemira communications

Management change in Kemira communications  (Company news)

Tero Huovinen, SVP Communications and Sustainability, has left Kemira on January 8, 2021. He has worked for Kemira since 2010 first as the head of investor relations and then communications.

“I would like to warmly thank Tero for his contribution to Kemira on behalf of the Management Board and wish him all the best in his future career,” says Jari Rosendal, President & CEO of Kemira.

Recruitment process for new Head of Communications will be initiated in due course. Kemira’s media spokesperson and contact will be Terhi Kivinen, Director Global Communications.
(Kemira Oyj)

Is Fiber-Based Food Packaging a New Golden Opportunity for Specialty Papers?

Is Fiber-Based Food Packaging a New Golden Opportunity for Specialty Papers?  (Company news)

The global conversation surrounding sustainability and the ways in which we can incorporate more sustainable initiatives into our lives has accelerated in recent years, and it is poised to become increasingly important. Individuals and companies are beginning to assess the ways in which their actions contribute to environmental footprints, which presents a golden opportunity for the pulp and paper industry when it comes to developing innovative, sustainable packaging substitutes — specifically, fiber-based food packaging.

With several major food corporations like McDonalds making the commitment to transition to 100% fiber-based packaging by 2025, a whole range of new opportunities has opened up for the P&P industry; several additional companies are expected to make conversions as well.

Fiber-Based Benefits
One of the most favorable factors that comes with the switch to fiber-based packaging is that it improves upon corporate sustainability initiatives. Corporate sustainability is a growing concern amongst companies of all sizes, and it is rooted in creating a “green” strategy aimed toward environmental stewardship as well as social, cultural and economic concerns.

Many consumers are also beginning to favor fiber-based packaging over plastic packaging. This could be a great new opportunity for the P&P industry because most consumers have historically demonstrated an unwillingness to pay more for the fiber-based packaging over unsustainable, yet cheaper options. However, studies are being published indicating that consumers are ready to start paying more for sustainable products, as the environmental benefits outweigh previous cost hesitations. For example, Nielsen found that 66 percent of consumers surveyed worldwide are willing to pay more for goods from brands that demonstrated social commitment.

Not only are consumers and manufacturers supporting and promoting this changeover in food packaging, but many developing legislative regulations are actually accelerating this conversion as well. Certain regions across the globe are now adding plastic taxes on non-recyclable plastic and enforcing bans on fluorochemicals and single-use plastics. It’s also expected that these bans and regulations are going to increase in prevalence as more and more municipalities begin to recognize sustainability as a top priority.

Along with the obvious environmental benefits, an increase in the production of fiber-based food packing could potentially put many of the machines that were idled due to COVID-19 back into use for new packaging projects in a burgeoning segment that is poised to explode. If suitable technology for barrier coating is available, this would provide an injection of new business for certain segments of the P&P industry, as many mills have curtailed or shuttered as a result of the pandemic.

Substitution Volume and Value
While many plastics can technically be recycled, some plastic types are more difficult to recycle and biodegradability remains problematic, which is the perfect opportunity for the paper industry to present substitute alternatives. As seen in the figure below, production capacity of paper food packaging in Europe has been trending higher annually since 2013.

While these are great opportunities for both the environment and the P&P industry, there are still relatively large barriers to be overcome, which will slow the implementation of these technologies at scale. In order to be a successful substitution, fiber-based packaging needs to outperform the competition and be cost competitive, and many companies are currently developing strategies, products, prototypes, etc. These large-scale innovations and market disruptions won’t happen overnight, however, the compelling advances being developed by the P&P industry will go a long way towards meeting sustainability guidelines now and in the future.
(Forest2Market, Inc.)

Sweet sensations in sustainable packaging

Sweet sensations in sustainable packaging  (Company news)

Picture: For the secondary packaging of its special “Tiny Tony’s” chocolate varieties into newly designed pouches, Dutch chocolate manufacturer Tony’s Chocolonely required a heat-sealable solution based on paper (© Tony’s Chocolonely)

Sappi supports Dutch chocolate producer with an innovation in secondary packaging

For the secondary packaging of its special “Tiny Tony’s” chocolate varieties into newly designed pouches, Dutch chocolate manufacturer Tony’s Chocolonely required a heat-sealable solution based on paper. With Sappi Guard Nature MS, innovation driver Sappi provided the ideal paper-based solution to the manufacturer. The substrate shows good printing results and delivers a high-value impression. But most importantly, it complements the company’s concept perfectly thanks to its environmentally friendliness and sustainability.

High standards at all levels
Dutch company and brand Tony’s Chocolonely is quite an exceptional chocolate manufacturer and has made remarkable strides since it was established in 2005. The company’s colourfully wrapped sweet temptations range from traditional flavours such as milk chocolate, to tasteful adventures such as dark milk pretzel toffee or white raspberry popping candy. However, the playfully designed products have a serious background: The company was founded by former investigative reporter Teun van de Keuken, who was committed to proving that producing so-called “slave-free” chocolate was possible. Tony’s Chocolonely produces and sells chocolate bars closely following fair trade principles and opposing any practices of slavery, child labour or any other types of exploitation.

With these high standards in terms of raw materials and production methods in mind, it comes as no surprise that Tony’s Chocolonely had a clear idea as to which packaging material its products should be wrapped in, clearly avoiding film as a base material. This became important when the company was looking for the perfect solution for the secondary packaging of its recently introduced “Tiny Tony’s” portfolio extension – 20 small 9-gram chocolate bars which had to be packed into matching secondary packaging: a stand-up pouch for the retail distribution to different markets.

Julia Wienk, Sourcer at Tony’s Chocolonely, describes the challenge the company took on: “We started by packing the Tiny Tony’s in cardboard boxes, but as demand increased we also wanted to pack them in stand-up pouches for duty free outlets and in supermarkets. The challenge was to find a paper that suited our requirements: a paper on which we could print with a similarly high quality and which would be strong enough to hold 20 Tiny Tony’s.” Furthermore, the new packaging solution had to meet fundamental requirements such as Tony’s Chocolonely’s strict sourcing policy. Functional properties such as heat-sealability had to be guaranteed as well.

A long-standing partner to take on new challenges
In its search for the right paper-based product, the chocolate manufacturer was supported by two consulting partners: NOMI Co-Packing and Packaging Partners BV from the Netherlands. NOMI Co-Packing, especially, was ideally positioned to offer insight from its direct experience with this type of stand-up pouch, also referred to as “doypack”.

Due to their long-standing experience with the innovation leader’s product range, the packaging consultants very quickly identified Sappi as the ideal partner to produce the visually appealing pouches – since the sustainable wrappings for the classical 180gr chocolate bars at Tony’s Chocolonely are made of 100% recycled, uncoated and certified paper from Sappi.

Over an eight-month period, Sappi closely supported the process, providing the company with a variety of paper samples in different grammages for various tests and offering its expertise whenever needed. Finally, Sappi Guard Nature MS from Sappi’s paper-based and heat-sealable barrier-paper family turned out to be the perfect choice, as it delivered the best results in terms of strength, runnability and good printability.

Kerstin Teichmann, Market Manager Packaging Solutions at Sappi Europe, recalls: “Finding the perfect paper-based substrate for packaging the ‘Tiny Tony’s’ was a real challenge. For example, during the testing phase some pouches tore open at the bottom. Selecting the correct material thickness was therefore essential. Finally, we were able to narrow down the qualified substrates to Sappi Guard Nature MS with an 80 g/m² grammage.” The first pouches developed by Tony’s Chocolonely (Sappi Guard Nature MS with an 95 g/m² grammage) were used for the “Tiny Tony’s” Halloween range in the US for the first time and have been used ever since for this particular market only.

Sappi’s heat-sealable Guard Nature MS is specifically designed to meet the needs of the food industry. The sustainable alternative to multi-layer barrier films offers an integrated mineral oil barrier, which keeps the food within safe. And, thanks to its natural paper appearance, the consumer is given an impression of high value that ideally combines with the print image the substrate provides.

A solution that meets even the highest expectations
The decision-makers at Tony’s Chocolonely are delighted with the results: “Sappi Guard Nature MS is the perfect paper-based alternative for our pouches. Its appearance and processing features convinced us completely,” says Julia Wienk. Thanks to its recyclability in the paper waste stream and certificates such as PEFC™ and FSC™, the packaging solution complements the chocolate manufacturer’s concept of running its business with sustainability and consideration of natural resources in the foreground. Or as Julia Wienk puts it: “Ultimately, we want to ensure that whenever someone enjoys Tiny Tony’s, they’re making a positive contribution to the environment.”

The Dutch company is always focusing on finding sustainable solutions for people and nature. To save material and therefore natural resources, Tony’s Chocolonely successfully tested another member of Sappi’s family of packaging solutions – Sappi Seal with a grammage of 67 g/m². The paper-based material features a high percentage of renewable sources and shows great results in terms of runnability and printability. So good, in fact, that the chocolate manufacturer decided to permanently use it for the Tiny Tony’s retail pouches launched only recently.
(Sappi Alfeld GmbH)

VDBF e.V. becomes FEPE Germany

VDBF e.V. becomes FEPE Germany  (Company news)

With effect from 1 January 2021, the interests of the German envelope industry will be represented by the newly created German FEPE office in Nonnenhorn/Lake Constance.

Already in November 2020, the VDBF members had decided in a general meeting to join the European Federation of Envelope Manufacturers (FEPE) with headquarters in Brussels in order to further strengthen the role of the FEPE as a legitimate representative of the envelope industry in Europe and Germany.

At the same time it was agreed with the FEPE management in Brussels that the previous VDBF office will be replaced by a German FEPE office, which will continue to represent the interests of the German envelope industry at national level.

"In Germany, our word now carries much more weight, as the FEPE represents the interests of more than 100 member companies, with many thousands of employees in Europe," says the previous VDBF Managing Director Udo Karpowitz, who will also manage the German FEPE office with immediate effect.

For legal reasons, the VDBF e.V. will continue to exist for at least one more year and will then be dissolved completely by decision of the members.
(FEPE Geschäftsstelle Deutschland)

VDBF e.V. becomes FEPE Germany

VDBF e.V. becomes FEPE Germany  (Company news)

With effect from 1 January 2021, the interests of the German envelope industry will be represented by the newly created German FEPE office in Nonnenhorn/Lake Constance.

Already in November 2020, the VDBF members had decided in a general meeting to join the European Federation of Envelope Manufacturers (FEPE) with headquarters in Brussels in order to further strengthen the role of the FEPE as a legitimate representative of the envelope industry in Europe and Germany.

At the same time it was agreed with the FEPE management in Brussels that the previous VDBF office will be replaced by a German FEPE office, which will continue to represent the interests of the German envelope industry at national level.

"In Germany, our word now carries much more weight, as the FEPE represents the interests of more than 100 member companies, with many thousands of employees in Europe," says the previous VDBF Managing Director Udo Karpowitz, who will also manage the German FEPE office with immediate effect.

For legal reasons, the VDBF e.V. will continue to exist for at least one more year and will then be dissolved completely by decision of the members.
(FEPE Geschäftsstelle Deutschland)

Disposable paper cups become the raw material for graphic paper

Disposable paper cups become the raw material for graphic paper  (Company news)

According to the Federal Environmental Agency, 2.8 billion disposable cups are consumed each year in Germany alone. Around 60% of these are plastic-coated paper cups which are currently thrown away, as they cannot be recycled in a reasonable and economically meaningful manner.

The reason for this is the plastic coating on the inside, which prevents the cups from leaking or softening. The composite material of paper and plastic slows the recycling process. So far, the paper fibres could only be separated from the plastic coating in special recycling facilities and with a large amount of effort. However, separating the two materials is the prerequisite for restoring the paper fibres to the recycling loop. A newly developed, innovative recycling product now enables the fresh fibre pulp from disposable cups to be returned to the recycling loop in a resource saving and efficient way, without disproportionate additional input in the paper treatment process.

The innovative idea for the new product comes from the Printing and Media Technology department of the creart advertising agency in Fulda, in the state of Hesse. “The upcycling that takes place here serves to upgrade the material,” explains authorised officer Torsten Gröger, who came up with the idea. “The waste product of disposable cups become a raw material again, in this case for a graphic paper that can be used for various purposes in communication and advertising.” As the name suggests, CoffeeCup Paper comprises around 25% disposable paper cups and 75% directly recyclable waste paper. Once manufactured, it can be recycled again at least six more times.

The CoffeeCup Paper project was undertaken and the new recycling product realised together with IGEPA Großhandel GmbH as sales and project partner. Papierfabrik Koehler Greiz GmbH & Co. KG, part of the Koehler Paper Group, was recruited as co-operation partner. “The new procedure works and makes the recycling process for disposable paper cups both simple and economical,” says Udo Hollbach, Managing Director of Papierfabrik Koehler Greiz. “Working together and with the great commitment and expertise of all those involved, it proved possible to realise a special and pioneering project.” Koehler Greiz is behind the investments, which number in the millions, that will be required for the process to be expanded further and aligned optimally for the tasks of the future.

McDonald´s Deutschland is a pioneer in the realisation and manufacture of the first batch of CoffeeCup Paper. The company has been collecting cups for hot and cold beverages for recycling projects in its restaurants since April 2019. The 2019 sustainability update of the chain was printed on a run of over 350,000 pieces of CoffeeCup Paper made from recycled McDonald´s cups and waste paper. “With the option of printing our sustainability update on our own cups, thanks to CoffeeCup Paper, we are able to offer our guests tangible sustainability,” says Daniel Neusser, Department Head Sustainability at McDonald’s Deutschland. “The project shows that here at McDonald’s we have an overview of the entire life cycle of packaging, working continuously to close the recycling loop.”

The goal and major challenge for 2021 is now to make sufficient cup capacity available to enable CoffeeCup Paper to not only be used exclusively for special projects, but to be freely available on the market. “We now need more providers in the fast-food sector to collect their cups for us, thereby helping to transform waste into raw material for the recycling loop,” says Wolfgang Suerbaum, Managing Director of IGEPA Großhandel GmbH. “Participation in our project enables collaborating fast-food chains to take a positive position with regard to sustainability, whilst reducing their own waste disposal costs at the same time.”

The process is to be made as simple as possible for the participating companies. It is possible to have the disposable cups collected by IGEPA directly at the restaurants and stores and brought to the paper factory. Alternatively, the cups can also be collected by the respective distributors and disposal firms and collected by IGEPA from their central storage sites.

With the slogan “Many cups – one common goal.” the initiators are looking forward to enquiries, discussions and new partnerships. CoffeeCup Paper represents a genuine opportunity for all project participants to demonstrate credible and authentic sustainability and render it tangle,” says Torsten Gröger.
(Koehler Greiz GmbH & Co KG)

Metsä Fibre and Havator sign preliminary agreement on lifting services for the construction...

Metsä Fibre and Havator sign preliminary agreement on lifting services for the construction...   (Company news)

...of the Kemi bioproduct mill

Metsä Fibre, part of Metsä Group, and Tornio-based lifting services company Havator have signed a preliminary agreement on the lifting work to be carried out during the construction of the Kemi bioproduct mill in Finland. In addition to lifting services for the construction phase, the overall agreement covers various special transport services. These include lifting planning and expert services for the construction of the bioproduct mill, which would take about two and a half years. The preconditions for making the decision on the EUR 1.5 billion investment in the Kemi bioproduct mill are expected to be in place in early 2021.

“We require our partners to be committed to the goals of the project in terms of safety, schedules and quality, and Havator meets these requirements. The company has been a trusted supplier at our Kemi mill site for a long time and has provided the lifting services for the construction of our bioproduct mill in Äänekoski, for example”, says Jari-Pekka Johansson, Director of the bioproduct mill project at Metsä Fibre.

Many cranes of various sizes, suitable for various lifting tasks would be used at the worksite, including mobile and crawler cranes. Precast elements and equipment components would be moved using self-propelled modular transporters (SPMT transporters), for example.

“As a local supplier of comprehensive lifting solutions, Havator is able to provide all lifting, transport and heavy moving at the mill site during the construction phase. Our operations are guided by safety, efficiency and a strong customer focus. For the customer, this means that the solutions are always carefully planned and safety is prioritised to achieve a result that is as efficient as possible in terms of both time and cost. Lifting planning plays an important role in this”, says Jukka Heininen, Havator’s regional manager in charge of the project.

“Havator has the longest and most extensive experience of projects of this size in Finland, and the benefits of experience are undisputed in overall solutions such as this one. We are able to mobilise equipment efficiently from our local depot in the north of Finland and, if necessary, from southern Finland and even Sweden”, notes Christoffer Landtman, Havator’s CEO.

The degree of the bioproduct mill project’s Finnish origin is expected to be high – in the Äänekoski bioproduct mill project it was 70%. During the potential construction phase, the Kemi bioproduct mill’s employment impact is estimated to be nearly 10,000 person-years, of which more than half would be carried out in Kemi. The total number of employees working during the construction phase is estimated to be about 15,000. If implemented, the investment would secure the existing 250 jobs at the current Kemi mill for decades to come. Through its direct value chain, the new bioproduct mill would employ around 2,500 people in Finland, which would be 1,500 people more than the employment effect of the current pulp mill in Kemi.

If implemented, the bioproduct mill would produce some 1.5 million tonnes of softwood and hardwood pulp per year, as well as many other bioproducts. The bioproduct mill would not use any fossil fuels at all, and its electricity self-sufficiency rate would be 250%. This would further strengthen Metsä Group’s position as a major electricity producer relying on renewable Finnish fuels.
(Metsä Fibre Oy)

InterPrint starts to digitize its label production with dry toner technology offered by Xeikon CX3

InterPrint starts to digitize its label production with dry toner technology offered by Xeikon CX3  (Company news)

Thanks to the Xeikon CX3, InterPrint works with low levels of stock and boosts productivity with no pre-treatment needed

Caption: Xeikon CX3 label press at Interprint.

InterPrint, a company specialised in the production of adhesive and non-adhesive labels on a variety of substrates, has over 20 years’ experience providing its customers with the best quality service. The company has recently added a Xeikon CX3 to its production plant, a digital label press which uses Cheetah technology to digitally print labels on any material with no need for priming beforehand. Tomás Iglesias, CEO of InterPrint, says: “We chose this press for its dry toner technology which enables us to work with low levels of stock and boost our productivity as pre-treatment of substrates is not needed.”

Specialised in labels with over 1200 customers in its portfolio, InterPrint produces adhesive and non-adhesive labels on paper, cardboard, PVC, polyester, heat-transfer labels, hot foil stamped labels, multi-layer labels and security labels. It also produces folded boxes and promotional printed material for various markets such as pharmaceutical labs, large food and drink retailers, and logistics providers. To achieve this, it relies on an extensive production platform including a Xeikon CX3 which stands out for its digital printing capabilities. The company has already digitalised 10% of its production as a result of this investment.

Inks and substrates
Iglesias is very satisfied with the results obtained with the Xeikon CX3. “This press enables us to use different substrates of varying thickness, including heat sensitive substrates, to produce transparent and white labels with high levels of opacity. It must also be pointed out that the inks used for dry toner are safe for use with food, since some projects require this compliance, and offer high quality printing, comparable to offset.”

With a resolution of 1200 x 3600 dpi, the Xeikon CX3 label press is exclusively designed for self-adhesive and pressure-sensitive labels. It offers all the advantages that have made the Xeikon 3000 series such a unique product line, such as the use of dry toners that comply with the regulations of the United States FDA, Nestlé, Swiss regulations, and also the future European regulation on printing inks on food-contact materials and the ability to print opaque white toner in one pass.

For the CEO of InterPrint, working with the Cheetah technology that the Xeikon CX3 offers has many advantages. “The ability to offer variable data printing, shorter preparation and change times for short run jobs since regular runs are under 500 metres, the use of safe dry-toner, and the availability of the press to work 24 hours a day are solid reasons why we chose to go with this technology.”

Dry toner
The Cheetah dry toner technology requires a much lower fusing temperature than typical toner-based presses which makes it possible to print on a variety of heat-sensitive substrates. Xeikon presses use dry toner electrophotography that works with conventional substrates with no need to pre-treat them. Furthermore, Xeikon toner offers extremely high resistance to light and is a printing process that is genuinely environmentally friendly, emitting no volatile organic compounds. According to Iglesias, the sustainability of the press was another major reason for acquiring it.

In addition, the presses can easily integrate with workflow applications and converting/finishing solutions from third-party manufacturers and offer professional features for colour management. In addition to the CMYK + white base option, the fifth station of the Xeikon CX3 press can be used for colours that expand colour gamut or for special tones to add security features. The press works with substrates varying in widths from 40 to 350 g/m².

Iglesias concludes: “From the get-go, we put our trust in the press and in our proximity with the manufacturer. Now we see that with the installation of the Xeikon XC3, we have managed to reach new customers to offer them labels with added value and customised runs at affordable costs. We have also been able to increase our production capacity by integrating digital printing into our range of services which include flexographic printing, screen printing, stamping and barcode printing.”
(Xeikon Manufacturing and R&D Center)

UPM Biochemicals grows lignin business with new Domtar supply agreement

UPM Biochemicals grows lignin business with new Domtar supply agreement  (Company news)

UPM and the US-based pulp and paper producer Domtar Paper Company LLC have signed an agreement for UPM to acquire the total annual kraft lignin production of Domtar’s Plymouth Mill in North Carolina, USA as of January 2021. This step enables UPM to expand its role in the growing lignin business and different application segments.

Following the agreement, UPM will increase its supply of kraft lignin by more than 20.000 metric tonnes annually. Part of the supply will be used to complement the existing UPM BioPivaTM product family. UPM lignin products will be sold globally through UPM’s sales network and are supported by strong technical expertise.

“We are very pleased to have agreed this new supply agreement with Domtar. It enables us to expand our lignin business in the growing biochemicals market before the start-up of our Biorefinery in Leuna, Germany,” says Juuso Konttinen, Vice President, UPM Biochemicals.

“These additional volumes of kraft lignin and the increased security of supply will enable us to serve our customers even better. The demand for sustainable kraft lignin solutions has been increasing steadily and customers value our strong sustainability credentials and proven technical expertise,” adds Christian Hübsch, Director, Lignin Business at UPM Biochemicals.

"Domtar is excited to partner with UPM to provide sustainable alternatives to fossil-based products," Steve Henry, Domtar's vice president of strategy and business analysis said.

Kraft lignin products such as UPM BioPivaTM are used as a renewable alternative to fossil-based products in a growing range of applications, such as lignin-based phenolic resins. They offer high technical performance, with a considerably improved environmental footprint.

UPM is currently building an industrial scale biochemicals refinery in Leuna, Germany, to produce biobased Monoethylene Glycol (BioMEG), Monopropylene Glycol (BioMPG) and industrial sugars as well as renewable functional fillers and lignin from sustainably sourced hardwood.

GP Announces Sale of Nonwovens Business to Glatfelter

GP Announces Sale of Nonwovens Business to Glatfelter  (Company news)

GP reached an agreement to sell the company‘s nonwovens business to Glatfelter, a leading global supplier of engineered materials, headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, for $175 million. The sale must still go through customary closing conditions and regulatory clearances from competition authorities.

The proposed transaction includes Georgia-Pacific’s nonwovens operations at Mt. Holly, North Carolina, which produces airlaid nonwoven material for commercial customers used to make table top, wiping, food pads, hygiene and related products, and a research center in Memphis, Tennessee.

“Georgia-Pacific nonwovens employees at Mt. Holly and Memphis have run safe, productive operations and worked hard to advance our nonwovens business to meet customer needs,” said Mike Adams, president – Georgia-Pacific Professional and Nonwovens. “We believe this potential sale to Glatfelter, an established manufacturer and supplier of nonwovens products, is in the best interests of both customers and our nonwovens employees.”

Current Georgia-Pacific nonwovens employees, totaling approximately 150 people, will become employees of Glatfelter at the time the deal closes. In 2018, Georgia-Pacific LLC sold Steinfurt GmbH, the company’s European nonwovens business, to Glatfelter for $185 million.
(Georgia-Pacific Corp.)

SCA Obbola: Partnering in technology, service and automation

SCA Obbola: Partnering in technology, service and automation  (Company news)

The SCA Obbola mill in Sweden has an impressive track record of success in the pulping industry. Upgrades in technology, the utilization of Advanced Process Controls and support from Valmet’s evaporation service help the mill achieve its production goals for renewable packaging material.

Photo: Some of the crew members behind the good results from the Obbola evaporation plant. From left: Andreas Vikström, Jonas Jönsson and Mattias Jonsson.

The SCA Obbola mill in Sweden manufactures board for consumer and transport packaging. It is currently in the midst of a massive expansion project. Global demand for renewable high-quality packaging is on the rise, and the current goal is to increase production at Obbola from 450,000 to 725,000 tonnes per year.

Partnering in technology, service and automation
Valmet supports the mill with new technology, service and automation in several of its process areas. One of the most recent upgrades from Valmet was the new evaporation supervisory control system. This proved a great success. Andreas Vikström, manager of the chemical recovery department at SCA Obbola, is happy with the results: “The new supervisory control system keeps the dry solids very stable. Some of our operators say that the dry solids level is ‘flat as a line,’ and as they have the experience to be experts at what they do, I’m sure they mean that it’s a good thing.”

Vikström has worked at Obbola mill for more than 20 years. He managed the fiber line department before he was responsible for chemical recovery. He therefore has a good view of the mill’s development. He outlines Obbola’s focus: “At Obbola, we often discuss what we should do to make the mill robust. And for us, this means that our mill is safe for our people, and that the equipment works as it should. Achieving this makes it easier for us to avoid accidents, reach or exceed our production targets, and reduce our costs.”

Evaporation service secures reliability and safety
Valmet’s evaporation service team has supported the Obbola evaporation plant for several years.

“From Valmet’s perspective, things look fine. The evaporation plant is ten years old, but our inspections have confirmed that it’s in very good mechanical shape. Based on what we’ve seen, I think Obbola will be able to enjoy the benefits of their evaporation plant for many years to come,” says Carl-Jonas Krus from Valmet’s Services team in evaluating Obbola’s evaporation plant.

“We’re happy with the evaporation service Valmet provides. We get good advice, and there is an high focus on safety,” Vikström comments.

SCA Obbola – more than 100 years of success
SCA Obbola has a long history, and it’s easy to find stories on achievements and highlights from the past. Sulfate pulp production started in 1913, but today Obbola is a good example of a well-performing mill. The products’ carbon footprint has decreased by 30 percent over the past ten years, biofuel has replaced oil, and there is an intense focus on quality and environmental performance.

SCA is currently investing heavily in Obbola. More improvements are underway, and the future looks bright: “We’ve always worked to make the mill better, and I think many are proud of what we’ve achieved so far. But there’s also a feeling that the future is exciting. Things look good,” ­Vikström concludes.

The Obbola evaporation plant
Obbola’s evaporation plant, which started up in 2009, was built to evaporate 270 tonnes of water per hour. Special care was taken to ensure a good working environment, and one result of this work is that the plant is very quiet. This makes it much easier for personnel to work there. As improved technical solutions have been discovered during the decade since the start-up, some small upgrades have been added to the plant, but the original heating surfaces are unchanged.
(Valmet Corporation)

International Paper Reaches Agreement to Sell Its Corrugated Packaging Business in Turkey

International Paper Reaches Agreement to Sell Its Corrugated Packaging Business in Turkey  (Company news)

International Paper (NYSE: IP) has entered into an agreement to sell its 90.38% ownership interest in Olmuksan International Paper to Mondi Group for approximately €66 million. The Olmuksan business includes corrugated packaging facilities in Turkey with an approximate annual revenue of TRY1,093 million (€150 million).

The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2021, subject to certain closing conditions and regulatory approvals. This action is in line with International Paper's strategy to serve markets from an advantaged position.

Corrugated packaging remains a strategic business for International Paper in EMEA.
(International Paper)

AR Packaging optimises the boosting home deliveries with smartly constructed snack boxes

AR Packaging optimises the boosting home deliveries with smartly constructed snack boxes  (Company news)

To meet the increasing needs of packaging tailored for take away and home delivery, AR Packaging is developing a full range of sustainable solutions. Two different snack boxes are good examples of patented carton-based packaging which are ideal for these applications and can help reducing the use of plastic packaging.

As social distancing and governmental restrictions on restaurants due to covid-19 continue, take away and home delivery demand is increasing dramatically. Food can be safely distributed directly from the kitchen to the front door of consumers who do not want to or cannot visit the restaurants. As a consequence, demands on packaging solutions adapted for this part of the hospitality sector are growing.

Two different snack boxes are examples of patented packaging developed by AR Packaging to answer on customers’ increasing needs for take-away & delivery solutions. The carton-based snack boxes are perfect for different types of food & beverages to go and they are a more sustainable alternative to plastic-based packaging.

“Snack boxes is one example of our many solutions tailored for the take away and home delivery segment. We also develop customer specific packaging to meet unique requirements for product protection, branding or distribution”, says Yoann Bouvet, Sales Director Food Service at AR Packaging. “Even if home deliveries are now more relevant than ever before, the need for packaging dedicated to take away and delivery will continue to grow also after covid-19 and AR Packaging has additional solutions in the pipeline to be launched within short.”
(AR Packaging Holding AB)

Karl Knauer wins gold for wraparound packaging for Bauerfeind

Karl Knauer wins gold for wraparound packaging for Bauerfeind  (Company news)

European Carton Excellence Award 2020

At first sight, it is not immediately obvious that the wraparound packaging for the sports compression sock series of the Bauerfeind brand has such a sophisticated design. But if you take a closer look at it like the expert jury of the European Carton Excellence Award 2020, you will be immediately excited. “The extraordinary wraparound packaging is a masterpiece of design.”

Not only does it make an impression at the point of sale, the clever packaging design keeps material usage to a minimum and at the same time maximises its appeal to consumers and brand owners alike. The product contents can be accessed directly without having to remove the packaging, with the integrated anti-theft protection. Despite the sophistication, it is simple and intuitive to open.” This was the rationale behind the award for the Black Forest team. “We always aim to develop packaging that impresses everyone – manufacturers, purchasing departments and customers,” explained Rita Schätzle, Project Manager at Karl Knauer KG. “This is why we are delighted to be making an impression not only on the market but also at international competitor level with our Bauerfeind solution.”

But even more important for the company with its 800 employees in Germany and Poland is that it has again proven that cardboard packaging meets even the highest demands and is a real, sustainable alternative to plastic. The replacement of plastic is increasingly important for more and more areas and creates new markets.
(Karl Knauer KG)

Western Shield Runs Faster with the New Nilpeter FA-17

Western Shield Runs Faster with the New Nilpeter FA-17  (Company news)

Picture: Western Shield Label Company Runs Faster with the New Nilpeter FA-17

Western Shield Label Company has installed a new Nilpeter FA-17 at the company’s location in Los Angeles, California, USA. With the new FA, Western Shield’s general focus is long-run prime, pressure sensitive labels, and specialty labels with in-line cold foil embellishment.

”This is our second Nilpeter press. We previously bought an FB-Line and were very pleased with the performance. The experience with the FB-Line and the Nilpeter team was a key factor in our ultimate decision to purchase the FA-17,” says Dan Stadler, Director of Marketing, Western Shield Label Company

An Excellent Fit All Around
”We have been working with Nilpeter on and off for many years. As far as purchasing an actual press, we initiated the discussions on the FB-Line in 2016. We had acquired a large new account that required us to substantially increase our capacity. We were pleased with the speed and registration of the FB-Line, and wanted to improve set-up times, and reduce waste. The FB-Line, which we use for long-run jobs particularly focused on the beverage segment, was and has been an excellent fit for us all around,” says Mike Ornelas, Director of Procurement, Western Shield Label Company.

A Means to Enter the Flexible Packaging Space
“The new FA-17 was installed in the spring of 2020. The logic behind the purchase was quite simply, that the FA-Line has advanced technology that allows us to run faster and reduce waste. The additional width, this being our first 17’’ press in the Los Angeles facility, was a factor as well. Lastly, we are using the FA-Line’s capabilities as a means to enter the flexible packaging space,” Dan Stadler adds.

Partnership Is Key
”Nilpeter partnered with us first by understanding our business model, and then assisting us in making the best decisions on the equipment, that most clearly fits our needs. More specifically, Nilpeter took the time, upfront, to understand our current state, and proposed future state, and then helped us fill the gaps equipment-wise,” says Nizar Elias, CEO, Western Shield Label Company.

”We are looking to continue building capacity and capabilities across our 5 locations. Through our recent new locations, we inherited additional Nilpeter equipment, and we certainly see a path for additional purchases,” Dan Stadler concludes.

”Western Shield’s commitment to producing a high quality product in a timely, competitive, and efficient manner makes their choice of the Nilpeter FA-Line a natural fit. Nilpeter knows, that in today’s business environment, choosing the right printing partner has never been more important. We at Nilpeter appreciate the trust Western Shield has put in us,” John Crammer, Sales Consultant, Nilpeter USA, adds.

Built Around the Modern Print Operator
Designed to accommodate the printer’s ever-growing needs, Nilpeter’s FA-Line is built around the modern print operator, with an intuitive user interface and fully mobile print controls. A benchmark of flexibility and modularity, the FA allows printers to enhance the performance of their press with Value-Adding Units, Application and Automation Packages, according to application needs and budget. Last but not least, all main components are produced in-house, meaning higher production quality and control.
(Nilpeter A/S)

H&M tests paper packaging in online retailing

H&M tests paper packaging in online retailing  (Company news)

Swedish textile group H&M Hennes & Mauritz GBC AB, Stockholm, tested sustainable packaging solutions in December at its logistics centers in the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Sweden, China, Russia and Australia.

The paper bags have already been used in several million packages to end consumers, according to H&M, and have been used to ship its COS, ARKET, Monki and Weekday brands. The H&M brand has also begun rolling out the packaging solution in select markets and will expand its use in the coming months, the fashion company said. In early 2021, the & Other Stories brand is also expected to ship online orders in recyclable paper packaging.
(EUWID Verpackung)

LITHOMAN machine relocation for Nahdet Misr continues the success story of an intense ...

LITHOMAN machine relocation for Nahdet Misr continues the success story of an intense ...  (Company news)


It is already the second LITHOMAN printing system within two years which was moved to Egypt by manroland Goss. The printing press was successfully relocated and put into operation in close cooperation with the technical team of the Nahdet Misr Publishing Group (Nahdet Misr). As one of the largest book printers in Egypt, Nahdet Misr is also setting a new benchmark in the Egyptian market in terms of print quality.

-Printing press and project management expertise at its best lead to a on time start-up despite Corona restrictions.
-Second LITHOMAN ensures top print quality after its successful relocation, e.g. for high-quality schoolbooks.
-The close partnership continues in January 2021, when extensive machine revisions make both presses fit for the future.

With the relocation of a 72-page LITHOMAN from Erpe Mere in Belgium to Egypt, manroland Goss equips its customer Nahdet Misr with another performance driver, currently the highest-production commercial press in the entire MENA region. This makes the Nahdet Misr Publishing Group one of the most important publishing and media groups in Egypt and the Arab world. Among other things, it stands for high-quality scientific and educational books, through which education and culture should be accessible to all sections of society. Demanding on highest quality aspects on the production results, Nahdet Misr ultimately decided to invest in a further LITHOMAN press.

High-volume meets top quality

The 72-page LITHOMAN tops the world rankings in the high-quality high-volume sector. Equipped with state-of-the-art drive technology, the press specializes in the industrial print production of magazines, catalogs and books. Since November of this year, the second printing system of this type has been providing the desired performance and quality boost for Nahdet Misr's schoolbook production.

All project management and implementation work from a single source

Perfect match in all respect: The customer's requirements for the highest printing and service quality were met by manroland Goss. "In each single project phases, we were completely satisfied with the cooperation," says Dr. Eng. Ahmed M. Ibrahim, Member of the Board of Nahdet Misr. "At every stage of the relocation, from disassembly and transport to the start of production, we knew that we were in good hands. We are very happy that we found a reliable partner for us in manroland Goss."

“Despite last year challenges, we were able to work hand in hand and in perfect harmony with manroland Goss experts in all stages of the project – meeting the very challenging start up date” says Eng. Ahmed Ahmed Abdelrazek Labana the Chief of the engineering sector at Nahdet Misr.

“Nadhet Misr management revolutionary vision and successful partnership with manroland Goss has set a new benchmark by implementing state of the art technology to meet the highest quality and productivity demand in the Egyptian printing market,” added Eng. Fathi Elkheiashy CEO Texti Company – manroland Goss partner in Egypt.
(manroland Goss web systems)

Sustainability: Part of the tradition and driver of innovation

Sustainability: Part of the tradition and driver of innovation  (Company news)

In the media, sustainability as a buzzword can be found everywhere. The forestry invented the term and the paper industry cultivated it. At Koehler, sustainability is part of the corporate strategy and the secret to success.

‘The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it’, said British polar explorer Robert Swan. Nowadays, taking responsibility and showing initiative are qualities that are more important than ever before. But they are also fundamental qualities for being successful in business, and the Koehler Group has now enjoyed success for 213 years. Challenges and courageous decisions have shaped Koehler’s history, but one thing has remained the same: at Koehler, the family-owned company located in the Rench valley, sustainability plays a decisive role.

At Koehler, sustainability cannot be separated from tradition and innovation. The tradition of the company, which is now in its eighth generation of family management, forms the basis on which innovations can be created, which in turn foster sustainable development. The new production line 8 is an outstanding example of this. Without the courage shown by the current company management around Kai Furler, but also by his father and his uncle Klaus and Wolfgang Furler, the project would not have been realized. Hardly any family business of Koehler Group’s size can manage an investment of 300 million euros. Even Koehler can only do so because it has been managed sustainably in the past.

But sustainability at Koehler is not limited to the way in which the company does business, but also influences every aspect of its thinking and actions. Particularly in the paper industry, which in the past has not always worked towards the responsible use of resources, Koehler is an example of how things can be improved.

Resources, such as water, are used responsibly. The pulp used to produce virgin fiber paper comes from certified sustainable and controlled forestry sources. Through continuous internal improvement processes, all employees at Koehler work together to save resources, streamline processes and optimize workflows. In many areas, the company has thus become the benchmark for the industry.

Koehler responded to the challenge of high energy demands as early as 2012 by founding Koehler Renewable Energy. This company plans and operates biomass combined heat and power plants, wind farms, hydroelectric power plants and photovoltaic systems. The Kehl mill, where production line 8 was built, is almost fully equipped with electricity and steam from the neighbouring biomass combined heat and power plant. Only peak loads are covered by the external grid.

At a time when the political decision is being made to phase out coal-fired power generation, Koehler is also working on actively promoting the decarbonization of its two coal-fired power plants in Oberkirch and Greiz. By doing so, Koehler is contributing to the energy turnaround in Germany.

Another important component is logistics. Koehler shifts much of this to rail and waterways, and the Rhine harbor near the Oberkirch and Kehl mills encourages the company to do so. By building an onsite precipitated calcium carbonate (PCC) plant at the Kehl mill, Koehler has not only greatly reduced truck traffic, but the plant also binds the CO₂ emitted by the neighbouring biomass combined heat and power plant with milk of lime to produce PCC, which is used as a filler in the production of paper and coating compounds.

In Greiz, in the state of Thuringia, Koehler produces paper based on 100 percent secondary fibers. Whereas the mention of recycled paper conjures the image of grey exercise books, Koehler produces high quality paper in bright colors, which have been awarded the ‘Blue Angel’ eco-label.

Sustainability is also a top priority for products in the virgin fiber sector. An expression of this is, for example, the Blue4est® thermal paper, a truly innovative product because it doesn‘t contain any thermosensitive chemicals and is suitable for direct food contact. The new paper produced on production line 8 will also be suitable for direct food contact. The aim is to produce paper for sustainable packaging solutions in all industries.

The products in the NexFlex® line represent the product portfolio of the new flexible packaging paper division. In addition to one-sided coated and uncoated machine-glazed paper, customers can also obtain paper with functional coatings. Koehler NexPlus® paper will replac e plastics in many applications in primary and secondary packaging. A Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) commissioned by Koehler has shown that certain products made from this paper have a more than 60 percent lower CO₂ footprint than conventional plastic products over their entire life cycle, from raw material to recycling. Other influencing factors were also considered and rated significantly more positively for paper than for plastic. Further LCA studies are planned.

Koehler is consistently pursuing the path of assuming responsibility, making courageous decisions, developing innovative products and thus contributing to meeting global challenges.
(Papierfabrik August Koehler SE)

Norske Skog: Promising future for the Tasman mill and Nature's Flame

Norske Skog: Promising future for the Tasman mill and Nature's Flame  (Company news)

The Tasman mill has over the last period commenced production of paper for supplies into the Asian packaging markets in the form of Pulp on Reel. This is part of the ongoing strategic development process to transition the Tasman mill in New Zealand out of standard newprint production. As part of the same strategic review, Norske Skog has received significant inbound interest for Nature’s Flame pellets facility located close to the Tasman mill; therefore, Norske Skog has decided to launch a process to asses the best long term ownership structure for this operation.

“The Tasman mill management and the larger Australasian organisation have shown entrepreneurial spirit in quickly developing an alternative business case for the mill, making good commercial use of existing assets and infrastructure on the site. I am certain that the continuing work will result in further ways to maximise the potential in the Tasman mill’s excellent fiber access and fiber processing competencies” says Norske Skog Chief Executive Officer, Sven Ombudstvedt.

Pulp on reel at Tasman mill
Norske Skog has commenced production of paper in the form of Pulp on Reel at its Tasman mill in New Zealand that can be used directly in the manufacture of containerboard, or alternatively re-pulped. The primary market for the product is the Asian packaging producers. Existing assets and infrastructure on the Tasman site allow for production of approximately 200,000 tonnes of annual paper as Pulp on Reel. The transition is enabled by using the same production process, employees and equipment with very limited investments, and is in reponse to material market demand for the product qualities that the Tasman mill can produce. Pulp on Reel is produced by drying mechanical pulp, made with specific properties suited to each customer, and based on roundwood and sawmill chips, through the paper machine.

This product transition is part of the ongoing strategic review of the mill and will, as announced on 9 October 2020, allow for cessation of standard newsprint production, while continuing operations at the site until the strategic review comes to a conclusion. Ceasing standard newsprint production at Tasman will reduce regional capacity by 150,000 tonnes, and Norske Skog’s Boyer mill will become the only domestic publication paper producer with 150,000 tonnes newsprint capacity and 135,000 tonnes LWC magazine capacity.

Nature’s Flame
Following the initiation of the Tasman strategic review process, Norske Skog has experienced significant inbound interest for the Nature’s Flame pellets facility located approximately 100 kilometers southwest of the Tasman mill in Taupo. It is a state-of-the-art Andritz facility producing premium certified pellets from FSC certified and long-term contracted fibre using renewable geo-thermal energy. The majority of pellets are sold on long-term contracts to domestic and Asian customers, with approximately 50,000 tonnes being contracted to the New Zealand dairy producer Fonterra as part of Fonterra’s program to migrate from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources. The Nature’s Flame facility has an annual pellets production capacity of more than 85,000 tonnes, representing more than 425 GWh of thermal energy. Facility design and infrastructure provides opportunity to more than double production capacity through a relatively modest expansion investment. KPMG has been engaged to assist Norske Skog with the sales process.

“Norske Skog acquired Nature’s Flame in 2015 and have since engaged broadly in efficiency optimization of the production and also made an investment during 2019 to increase capacity to 85,000 tonnes. Since the ramp-up of the increased capacity in early 2020, the facility has produced efficiently and delivered production at an annualised rate of around 90,000 tonnes. We are naturally very satisfied to see that this promising performance has gained attention in wider circles,” says Norske Skog Chief Executive Officer, Sven Ombudstvedt.
(Norske Skogindustrier ASA)

SICK AG strengthens digitalization and global growth with new Executive Board structure

SICK AG strengthens digitalization and global growth with new Executive Board structure  (Company news)

Feng Jiao (photo) appointed to the Executive Board with responsibility for Sales & Service portfolio

SICK AG is expanding its Executive Board with effect from 1 January 2021: Feng Jiao has been appointed to the Executive Board with responsibility for the Sales & Service portfolio. Dr. Mats Gökstorp, up to now responsible for Sales & Service, will take over the newly created Products & Marketing portfolio. With this decision, the Supervisory Board of SICK AG sets the course for further growth in the rapidly changing sensor technology and market environments.

Feng Jiao is an engineer and internationally experienced sales specialist who can look back on many years of professional activity in North America and Asia. The 51-year-old Canadian has led the SICK Group’s business activities in China since 2014, and is responsible for the company’s sustained growth on the Chinese market. Before he joined SICK, Feng Jiao was active in sales management positions for the technology companies Harting and Siemens. In his function as Executive Board member with the Sales & Service portfolio he will be responsible for the SICK Group’s sales in all markets and regions, and open up further growth potentials for SICK worldwide, particularly in America and Asia.

Dr. Mats Gökstorp, Executive Board member with responsibility for the Sales & Service portfolio since 2013, will take over the newly created Products & Marketing portfolio, which consolidates all the functions necessary for the market-side implementation of digitalization. Dr. Gökstorp has a comprehensive wealth of experience in sales and product management. His task within the new Executive Board structure will be to strengthen the links between products, sales and customers, as well as drive forward SICK’s development into a supplier of complete solutions.

Dr. Robert Bauer, Chairman of the Executive Board of SICK AG, will continue to focus on the topic area of Technology & Digitalization while further expanding the SICK Group’s innovative strength. The portfolio responsibilities of Dr. Martin Krämer (HR & Legal), Markus Vatter (Controlling, Finance & IT) and Dr. Tosja Zywietz (Operations) remain unchanged.

“Feng Jiao will expand the company’s top management with an experienced sales expert who is very familiar with the SICK environment. We are delighted to be able to welcome him onto the Executive Board,” comments Klaus M. Bukenberger, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of SICK AG. “We are convinced that the new Executive Board structure is an important driver for our corporate digitalization and will secure the long-term growth of the SICK Group worldwide.”
(Sick AG)

Modern industrial and commercial park to be built at Wiesloch/Walldorf site

Modern industrial and commercial park to be built at Wiesloch/Walldorf site  (Company news)

Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) has reached a further milestone as part of its planned site and structural optimization measures. The sale of an area of around 130,000 square meters to the VGP Group will create a new, modern industrial and commercial park at the Wiesloch/Walldorf site. A corresponding purchase agreement was signed today. VGP is a family-run European developer, operator and owner of high-quality logistics and commercial properties. The company has a fully integrated business model and many years of experience along the entire value chain, from land acquisition and development to asset and property management. Heidelberg achieves a purchase price in the mid double-digit million-euro range.

"By using space more efficiently, we will save considerable costs at Heidelberg in the future. In addition, we will use the funds this frees up to strengthen our liquidity in times of the Covid-19 pandemic and to press ahead with strategic investments for the future on the path of our digital transformation," said Rainer Hundsdörfer, CEO of Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG. "In VGP, we have found an experienced real estate developer as a partner who will market the space at the Wiesloch/Walldorf site in a future-proof manner in close coordination with the municipalities and Heidelberg."

Jan van Geet, Chairman of the Management Board of VGP, is also very pleased about the acquisition of the site: "We are very pleased that we have succeeded in acquiring this unique site. In close and trusting cooperation with the seller Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG, the municipalities and the city of Heidelberg, we were able to realize the acquisition very quickly. We plan to realign the site strategically and develop a modern industrial and commercial park here for long-term tenants from a variety of sectors. In this way, we want to make a sustainable contribution to the creation of new jobs and the economic development of the region." Van Geet adds, "Sustainability and energy efficiency are key parameters for the properties developed by VGP. These aspects will also play a central role in the development of the VGP Park in Wiesloch/Walldorf."

The VGP Group currently operates 31 parks in Germany. In Europe, the family-owned company based in Antwerp, Belgium, now operates 76 parks in twelve countries.

The Wiesloch/Walldorf site covers a total area of around 840,000 square meters. Of this, around 270,000 square meters are to be newly marketed in the course of the planned site and structure optimization. The partnership with VGP is the first step in this project. At present, almost 5,000 employees work at the site.
(Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG)

Konica Minolta has been awarded the ‘Tech for Good Award’ by the coveted 2020...

Konica Minolta has been awarded the ‘Tech for Good Award’ by the coveted 2020...  (Company news)

... Better Society Awards

The award recognises its work with The Big Issue magazine in becoming the first street newspaper to implement augmented reality (AR) using its genARate app, to provide a new way to access content, raise awareness of poverty, homelessness and social exclusion in the UK, and support vendor sales.

Konica Minolta was announced as the winner at a virtual awards event held on 2nd December, which recognised commercial companies who are helping create a better, more equal, ethical, and sustainable world for all. Rob Ferris, Chief Executive Officer at Konica Minolta Business Solutions (UK) Ltd states, “We are proud to have been recognised by the Better Society Awards 2020, for our work supporting The Big Issue. Konica Minolta is an organisation that is not only committed to supporting its employees, customers, partners, and wider society but also ensuring that technology is used to make a difference.”

The project initially came about following an inspiring conversation between a The Big Issue magazine vendor and a member of the Konica Minolta team. It prompted the team to think about how it could help the organisation and its vendors combat some of the challenges it was facing as a traditional print publisher.

With more publications being distributed freely on the streets, consumers preferring to consume content via digital channels, and potential customers glued to mobile phones walking past vendors, The Big Issue and its vendors were feeling the pressure.

Oliver Waddington-Ball, Head of Custom Content and Partnerships at The Big Issue commented, “Selling the magazine has given our vendors structure, a sense of purpose and dignity. It was really important for us to find a way to engage and empower a wider audience through digital channels, whilst not compromising on our physical vendor model,”

With the assistance of Konica Minolta, The Big Issue was the first street newspaper to implement augmented reality. Utilising the genARate AR app, publishers can overlay video, animations, or 3D models onto printed materials to create rich media communications that provide an exciting draw for the audience.

Rob adds, “People don’t tend to associate AR with a social enterprise like The Big Issue. We used AR in several editions to shift this perception and demonstrate how technology really can make a difference, in all parts of our society. Konica Minolta also provided the magazine with support and strategic advice on how to embrace digital transformation for the future. Undoubtedly the ability to converge its print and digital business, and give greater opportunity for readers to share content, has also delivered additional commercial benefits to the organisation by extending the reach, impact and influence of The Big Issue”.
(Konica Minolta Business Solutions (UK) Limited)

Innovative and recyclable drink cooler made with paperboard

Innovative and recyclable drink cooler made with paperboard  (Company news)

Showcasing a sustainable alternative for food packaging – that was the aim of the new demo project by Weilburger Graphics. The company created an innovative and recyclable beverage cooler made from paperboard and using a completely new waterproof coating.

For the material they chose Metsä Board’s, part of Metsä Group, strong and lightweight fresh fibre paperboard. The innovative packaging comes with a cooling tray and that can take up to 500 g of crushed ice or cold water. MetsäBoard Prime FBB EB eco-barrier paperboard was used with Weilburger Graphics’ new Senolith® water-based barrier coating to keep the water inside the cooler.

"Many of our customers, especially in the food, cooling and frozen food sectors, are looking for environmentally friendly packaging solutions that are also safe for direct food contact. Often these solutions need to be waterproof," says Arno Dürr, Sales Director at Weilburger Graphics GmbH, an international coating, flexo inks and adhesive manufacturer based in Germany.

The main body of the box, including a bottom and a cover, was made of MetsäBoard Classic FBB 340 g/m², while the special cooling tray, as well as the compartment separator for easy fill up was made of Metsä Boards eco-barrier paperboard MetsäBoard Prime FBB EB 265 g/m².

"Both the idea and the implementation turned out very well. The result was a sustainable alternative to conventional packaging methods, which also has an impressive feel and look. In the future this kind of package might be an option also for fresh fruit and other foods that need to be chilled," says Gabriel Goldmayer, Account Director at Metsä Board.

Fresh fibre paperboards usually tolerate humidity better than recycled fibre based grades. They are also lighter, and therefore enable a lower carbon footprint of the packaging. After use they are recyclable contributing hence to circular economy.
(Metsä Board Corporation)

Andreas Krengel appointed as new Member of the Management Board of WEPA Group

Andreas Krengel appointed as new Member of the Management Board of WEPA Group  (Company news)

The Supervisory Board of the WEPA Group has appointed Mr Andreas Krengel (photo) as a new member of the Management Board of the WEPA Group, effective from January 1, 2021.

The 32-year old business economics graduate who has held various executive positions at WEPA since 2018 will assume responsibility on the Management Board for the strategy and transformation process, for corporate communications and for the new business unit "New Business Areas". The latter includes the areas of WEPA Ventures, Innovation and Business Development related to the development of new business sectors.

Friedrich Merz, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the WEPA Group: "With Andreas Krengel joining the Management Board, the third generation of the Krengel entrepreneurial family assumes overall management responsibility for the corporate group – a further milestone in the history of the company."

Martin Krengel, CEO of the WEPA Group: "We welcome Andreas to the team of the Management Board and look forward to shaping the future path of our family business WEPA together with him. We wish him much success in his new endeavours."
(WEPA Hygieneprodukte GmbH)

Reduce the Spine Build up With the New Spine Nipping Press VFN 700

Reduce the Spine Build up With the New Spine Nipping Press VFN 700  (Company news)

The new VFN 700 spine nipping press from Muller Martini presses each book block in the spine area, thereby significantly reducing the spine build up. In this way, bookbinders can achieve a very good book block shape for all common paper types with their different characteristics.

Photo: The VFN 700 from Muller Martini is the right answer to the spine build up of the book blocks that occurs during book sewing.

In the manufacturing process of hardcover products, the spine build up of the book blocks caused by the folding process and resulting from thread sewing is a well-known phenomenon. This does not only lead to problems in downstream processes but can also have a negative effect on the quality of the product – key words are glue penetration into the book block and uneven glue application. To counteract this problem, book producers often use simple manual or semi-automatic presses. However, this generates an additional step in the manufacturing process and is therefore not efficient. With the new VFN 700 inline-capable, 30 cycles per minute spine nipping press, Muller Martini has the right answer to this challenge.

With the VFN 700, each book block is pressed in the spine area, which significantly reduces the spine build up. In this way a very good bookblock shape is achieved with all common paper types with their different characteristics. The pressing force is generated with the help of a pneumatic cylinder according to the toggle lever principle, resulting in a pressing force of up to 60 kN. The spring-loaded pretensioning clamps hold the book block in place and by that prevent the deformation of the book spine.

The VFN 700 has been designed for all conventional thread sewing applications and is therefore available in three versions. For an inline production using a Ventura Connect system or a Ventura MC 160/200 including a stacker and belt delivery, a respective variant is available and can be configured individually. The VFN 700 can also be configured offline – i.e. as a stand-alone machine – and can be loaded manually with book blocks from various book sewing machines.

Three operating modes complete the machine and make it possible to cover every case of application. If the VFN 700 is not needed, it can pass through the book blocks unpressed in "bypass mode". In "automatic mode" the bookblocks are pressed after a preset pressing time, while in "press & hold mode" each bookblock is pressed until the next one arrives.
(Müller Martini Marketing AG)

Södra Cell's Värö mill chooses Valmet to supply major upgrade

Södra Cell's Värö mill chooses Valmet to supply major upgrade  (Company news)

Valmet will upgrade the fiber line and recausticizing plant, as well as rebuild the pulp drying line, as part of Södra Cell’s Värö mill (photo) expansion in Sweden. The orders are part of the mill’s Expansion Värö 2.0 plan to increase the capacity to 850,000 tonnes per year. The increase is taking place in two steps, with the first aiming to reach 780,000 tonnes per year by 2022. The upgrade and rebuild will be undertaken by Valmet during 2021, and all equipment will be dimensioned for the second step.

In 2016, Värö was completely rebuilt to become one of the world’s largest and most modern softwood pulp mills with a capacity of 700,000 tonnes per year. Valmet was selected at that time as the supplier for upgrading the whole mill. Now it has been chosen again for this further expansion.

Valmet will deliver two TwinRoll wash presses and a Green Liquor Clarifier G2 (formerly OptiClear) to increase capacity in the existing green liquor handling. In addition Valmet will supply a new causticizer to increase residence time.

TwinRoll press means easy operation and lower environmental impact
“Our investment in two new TwinRoll wash presses is another step in our ongoing work to offer the market the best possible pulp, both in terms of quality and sustainability,” says Mehdi Arjmand, Fiber line Department Manager at Värö. “Our pulp already meets the specifications very well, but this upgrade increases the washing efficiency and raises our pulp purity to an even higher level. The greatest benefits these presses give to the fiber line are, by far, their easy operation and low need for maintenance. At the same time, we are able to minimize our impact on the environment, which is very important for us at Södra Cell Värö, by reducing water consumption, effluent volumes and chemical consumption.”

The project is a highly-targeted debottlenecking aimed at getting the highest positive impact on production and the environment, at the lowest expense. “With these new investments, the remaining bottlenecks in the fiber line and pulp drying line will be eliminated and Värö can increase its capacity towards the new target,” explains Mikael Gustafsson, Senior Sales Manager, Fiber Processing Business Unit at Valmet. “Low effluent flows and high environmental performance will be ensured with the latest generation of TwinRoll wash presses throughout the fiber line.”

“We are also pleased,” continues Gustafsson, “that Södra Cell Värö has now selected Valmet to install another Green Liquor Clarifier, in addition to the Sumithickner that they have operated for almost 10 years. It confirms, once again, that the high reliability, low OPEX and good process performance this technology delivers is appreciated among our customers.”

Record-setting pulp dryer to be improved even further
The rebuild of the pulp dryer, which in 2020 set a world productivity record for Nordic softwood, will allow it to handle the extra pulp coming off the fiber line. A complete pick-up suction roll and felt loop change will be done to improve machine capacity. In addition, the cutter layboy will be rebuilt to speed up the bale table and the lifting forks movement. Supporting tests for the drying line rebuild will be done at the pilot facilities in Inkeroinen, Finland, in the beginning of 2021.

“With this complete upgrade of the line, we are confident that the Värö mill will be able to further improve their world record as the most efficient drying machine for Nordic softwood,” comments Antti Suoknuuti, Sales Director, Wood and Pulp Handling Business Unit at Valmet.
(Valmet Corporation)

ABB completes large-scale remote commissioning of winder drives for major paper producer

ABB completes large-scale remote commissioning of winder drives for major paper producer  (Company news)

... in India

Paperboard and specialty paper producer ITC achieves greater uptime, improved reliability and better runnability through major upgrades completed in a short timeframe

ABB has completed a large-scale remote commissioning of winder drives, upgrading and commissioning PM5 installations at ITC’s Paperboards and Specialty Papers Division mill in south-central India.

This project included upgrading the mill’s complete winder drive system to ABB’s latest ACS880 drives, AC motors, AC800M controller and process panel, as well as ensuring that all new assets were fully commissioned and ready for operation.

Following studies of the existing machine, detailed task planning, and numerous checks on the safety aspects of every task, ABB’s domain expertise helped the team complete the commissioning in just three days.

ITC engineers conducted a series of installations, hardware and I/O (input/output) checks, and reporting of field challenges. Team feedback indicated the user-friendly ABB system assisted with this site work.

As a result of the drives upgrade, ITC will benefit from more accurate winder controls, including inertia compensation calculation, loss compensation, accurate load share and tension, while also experiencing higher operating speeds, with improved uptime and reliability.

Initial feedback from ITC reported improved runnability and reliability, while devising a solution for remote commissioning helped to reduce unnecessary downtime.

“Our ABB team mobilized quickly and used its remote expertise to complete this large-scale commissioning project, overseeing all drive parameterization, controller and human-machine interface (HMI) programming, testing and commissioning,” said Sanath Kumar, Global Product Manager for Paper Machine Drives and Vice President and Head of Engineering for Process Industries, ABB India.

“For any paper producer, the winder is a critical machine, which directly affects production. Any delay or malfunction will completely stop paper production processes. Remote commissioning during a planned maintenance timeframe was essential to maximize uptime for ITC and avoid unnecessary production losses.”
(ABB Limited)

The sale of a 30 percent stake in the Husum pulp mill to Norra Skog has been completed

The sale of a 30 percent stake in the Husum pulp mill to Norra Skog has been completed  (Company news)

Metsä Board, part of Metsä Group, announced on 1 December 2020 that it had signed an agreement to sell a 30 percent stake in its Husum pulp mill (photo) in Sweden to the Swedish forest owners' cooperative (ekonomisk förening) Norra Skog.

The transaction was completed on 4 January 2021, and its impacts will be included in Metsä Board's financial reporting as of the January–March 2021 interim report.
(Metsä Board Corporation)

Creative DM Factory elevates high quality full colour variable print capability with ...

Creative DM Factory elevates high quality full colour variable print capability with ...  (Company news)

...Ricoh Pro™ VC60000

Creative DM Factory has chosen to modernise its full colour variable digital printing capabilities and drive greater campaign engagement with a Ricoh Pro VC60000 high speed continuous feed digital colour press.

Photo: Creative DM Factory is elevating its variable data colour printing capabilities with a Ricoh Pro VC60000

The Dutch family run full service printing business specialises in self-mailers and response-enhancing inserts in mail packs. Its new system will enhance its delivery of high quality full colour print on a wide range of substrates.

Jacqueline ten Klei, owner and commercial manager, explains: “With the Ricoh Pro VC60000 inkjet printer we can take the next step in direct mail together with our clients. It will enable us to offer more options to produce and personalise campaigns effectively and efficiently, which will result in higher conversion rate. This is important because direct mail is all about conversion. It will also be able to print full colour promotions from a blank roll of paper in one pass. It cuts waste and storage which saves time and money.”

She added the press’s ability to manage different types of offset paper - woodfree and silk - up to 300gsm was also an important factor: “We see many additional applications, especially for jobs on paper between 170gsm and 300gsm. As well as names and addresses, we can change text and images – all on heavier paper. We can also add creative finishes with shutters, scratch layers or sliding cards to create interaction.”

The operation runs a number of Ricoh toner presses but identified an opportunity to expand its production possibilities with an inkjet system. ten Klei added: “An important reason for choosing this solution was the print quality that is absolutely competitive to offset. The productivity is extremely important, too.”

Sander Sondaal, Director Commercial Print Sales, Commercial and Industrial Printing Group, Ricoh Europe, comments: “We are now seeing a comeback of traditional direct mail in combination with data-driven and interactive communication. Creative DM Factory has been a pioneer in this area for decades. We are very proud to support them in producing and personalising direct mail campaigns more efficiently.”
(Ricoh Europe PLC)

Corona protection with love for the environment

Corona protection with love for the environment  (Company news)

WEIG Group companies win the European Carton Excellence Award 2020 with innovative disposable mask

They become even more important with increasing numbers of corona infections: mouth-nose masks to protect against droplets and aerosols. But the millionfold use leads to a high volume of waste that cannot be recycled. In order to offer an environmentally friendly alternative, the companies WEIG-Packaging and WEIG-Karton have developed a disposable mouth-nose mask made of recycled cardboard and filter paper.

The innovation has now been officially honored – as the winner of the European Carton Excellence Award 2020, Europe's most important competition for cardboard packaging. It is awarded annually by Pro Carton and the European Carton Makers Association (ECMA) which represent the European cartonboard and folding carton industry. To win the coveted award, cartonboard manufacturers, converters and designers submit their most creative and successful ideas. This year, the WEIG Group's face mask solution was the winner in the category "General Packaging, Recycled Fibre". The official award winners are WEIG-Packaging as converter and WEIG-Karton as cartonboard supplier. The jury especially praised the successful design, the easy handling and the environmentally friendly concept.

The clever concept comes from the packaging development department of WEIG-Packaging in Emskirchen. "We want to make a contribution to the fight against corona and at the same time use our expertise in the areas of recycling and cardboard," explains Sales Manager Ronny Bruchmann.

The disposable mouth-nose cover is made of cardboard and a filter paper as an insert. The paper reduces the spread of droplets and aerosols from the carrier. It is approved for direct contact with food so it can be worn without hesitation. The mask is suitable for any head size as it can be adjusted to the ear openings. The special highlight: the product can be individually printed by WEIG-Packaging – so companies have the option to use it as an advertising space.

The WEIG Group sees the target group primarily in companies and organizations that want to make the face mask solution available to customers, visitors or members. The first user is the wholesale bakery “Kuchenmeister” in Soest, Westphalia, an international supplier of ready-made cakes, pyramid cakes and christmas stollen.
(Moritz J. Weig GmbH & Co. KG)

Graphic Packaging International Delivering Viable E-Commerce Solutions that Improve ...

Graphic Packaging International Delivering Viable E-Commerce Solutions that Improve ...  (Company news)

...Consumer Convenience, Minimize Packaging Materials

Leading paper-based packaging solution provider, Graphic Packaging International (‘Graphic Packaging’), is responding to growing demand for viable Ships In Own Container (SIOC) solutions for e-commerce with a sustainable structure that is both sturdy and striking. To help customers in the e-commerce space improve consumer convenience, reinforce brand identity, streamline supply chains and improve efficiency, Graphic Packaging has introduced IntegraFluteTM, a durable, right-sized hybrid structure that combines a flexible inner bag with the structural protection of a fluted outer carton.

Chuck Tarlton, director of new product development at Graphic Packaging, commented, “IntegraFlute is a true omnichannel solution. For the customer, it palletizes directly and can be conveyed and shipped without additional packaging. With reduced headspace, it’s sized to be sortable, meaning it can be processed through e-commerce fulfillment centers, which improves handling and delivery. Essentially, it increases efficiency and reduces everything else – cost, waste, materials, supply chain issues – for a streamlined experience.” Tarlton added, “For consumers, the branded carton provides a seamless packaging solution from doorstep to pantry to recycle bin. The package arrives ready to use with easy-carry handles, simple dispensing features and is an ideal structure for efficient in-home storage.”

IntegraFlute also offers enhanced branding and merchandising opportunities with the option to litho, flexo or gravure print the outer carton. It is available in e-commerce-ready sizes up to 20 lbs. and is suited to any category where products are sold in loose-fill bags.

The wide range of categories includes pet products such as kibble, treats and litter; home and garden products including feeds, seeds, fertilizers, potting soil, pool chemicals, briquettes and wood pellets; and bulk food products like rice, beans and flour. Products packaged with Graphic Packaging’s IntegraFlute solution are currently available through Amazon.

Both the inner and outer layers of the pack, produced entirely by Graphic Packaging in the United States, are recyclable after household use. “We strive to deliver SIOC solutions that minimize packaging headaches, enhance brands and simplify e-commerce fulfilment. IntegraFlute does this with fiber-based, fully recyclable designs that meet the needs of a variety of categories,” continues Tarlton. “What’s more, IntegraFlute is engineered with right-sized cubic efficiency and zero tertiary packaging. Where we aim to truly elevate the consumer experience is in delivering sustainable, functional packages with more curb appeal than your average brown box.”
(Graphic Packaging Holding Company)

Up-and-coming Spanish packaging printing company working at full capacity during the pandemic

Up-and-coming Spanish packaging printing company working at full capacity during the pandemic  (Company news)

- Temps Impresores is a one-stop shop for folding carton printing
- New die cutter and folder gluer from Masterwork expanding the portfolio and access to new customers
- Investments: next printing press generation already ordered

Photo: The new MK Promatrix 106 CSB is easy to operate and quick to set up. It is a professional die-cutting and embossing machine with inline blanking.

Temps Impresores (Temps) based in Massanassa in the Spanish city of Valencia is a young company established in 2004 by three partners. Initially a commercial printing business, the company is now focusing on expanding its offering for packaging printing. It was this that prompted Temps to invest in equipment for folding carton postpress at the beginning of 2020 – shortly before the Covid-19 pandemic started. With the new MK Promatrix 106 CSB die cutter and the new MK Diana Easy folder gluer, Temps was able to expand its portfolio for strategically important packaging customers in the Levant region, i.e. in the Eastern Mediterranean, and offer its existing customers new products and services. It services the Spanish peninsula and the neighboring European countries. It is also still involved in commercial printing.

“We’ve been a customer of Heidelberg for many years, and value the partnership,” confirms Isidoro Sánchez, one of the company’s founders. “Despite the difficult times, Heidelberg went ahead with installing the new machines. The packaging orders more than made up for the drop in orders in the commercial end of things and got us over the first wave of Covid-19.” Since then Temps has specialized in manufacturing all kinds of packaging and was working at full capacity even during the pandemic. This year the printing company is targeting sales of almost two million euros.

Most of the current equipment at Temps is from Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg): a new Versafire digital printing press, a Suprasetter A74 CtP unit, a Speedmaster CD 74 four-color press, a Stahlfolder CH-66 folding machine that was installed last year, and a Polar N 115 Plus cutting machine.

Temps also uses Saphira consumables, which are being optimally perfect for the equipment they are used with. All the processes are integrated with the Prinect workflow for high transparency. With the Heidelberg Assistant there is now a digital interface to customers to coordinate orders and grow the trusting partnership.

“In order to strengthen the close relationship with our customers, acquire even more new customers, and always be able to offer the right product in top quality, we’ve already settled on our next investment,” explains Isidoro Sánchez. “We’re having a Speedmaster XL 75 six-color press with UV technology from the new 2020 generation installed soon. This will make us very flexible and enable us to better meet the needs of the discerning packaging printing market.”
(Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG)

Navigator reduces 30% of the group's CO2 emissions in 2021 with new biomass boiler ...

Navigator reduces 30% of the group's CO2 emissions in 2021 with new biomass boiler ...  (Company news) Figueira da Foz

The Navigator Company recently inaugurated a new biomass boiler at its Figueira da Foz industrial complex, in an overall investment totalling €55 million. This investment will allow the company to cut its fossil carbon dioxide emissions at this complex by around 150,000 to 200,000 tonnes per year, or 30% of the group’s emissions, in 2021.

Photo: Paper production at Figueira da Foz mill

This investment is part of the decarbonization strategy of the company, who decided in 2019 to meet European targets early and achieve carbon neutrality at all of its industrial complexes by 2035, achieving an 86% reduction in its CO2 emissions by this date. Note that Navigator was the first Portuguese company, and one of the first worldwide, to set such an ambitious goal.

Achieving this goal will require a total investment of €154 million, €55 million (around 35%) of which has already been invested to date since Navigator took on the commitment.

Around 400,000 tonnes of biomass will be used each year to operate this new structure. Half of this is comprised of waste from the internal debarking of eucalyptus wood (bark and sawdust), coupled with 200,000 tonnes of residual forest biomass acquired from abroad from operations involving forest management and the cleaning of rural areas.

Using residual forest biomass, the new boiler will generate thermal energy for the company’s production processes, making power generation significantly more efficient (co-generation). The new equipment will have a higher capacity and much more rigorous environmental performance, as a result of The Navigator Company’s investment in the best technology currently available for this purpose.

The Figueira da Foz mill will be the group’s first with electricity produced entirely from renewable sources. Navigator’s remaining mills will trend towards producing 100% of the electricity they consume from renewable sources, reducing fossil CO2 emissions using new technologies, decreasing specific energy consumption and, finally, offsetting 14% of the emissions they cannot eliminate through forests managed by the company or other technologies.
(The Navigator Company)

California is now called Ensocoat

California is now called Ensocoat  (Company news)

The companies of the IGEPA group have been the exclusive wholesale partner in Germany for Stora Enso's Ensocoat™ brand since 01.01.2021.

The product was previously marketed under the names California and California Duo. The existing depth of the product range will remain unchanged. So for you as a customer, nothing changes except the name.
(Igepa group GmbH & Co. KG)

First Ever Nilpeter FA-17 Installed in Kazakhstan

First Ever Nilpeter FA-17 Installed in Kazakhstan  (Company news)

Inkas LLC has purchased a 9-colour FA-17 from Nilpeter, the first of its kind to be installed in Kazakhstan.

Picture: New flexo press operator, Lavrenov Maxim from Inkas LLC, works on the new Nilpeter FA-17

Inkas LLC was founded in 2002 and has since established itself as one of the leading printing companies in Kazakhstan, cooperating with the best companies at home and abroad, in the market for flexible packaging of food and non-food products.

“We have more than 140 employees with a lot of practical experience, operate 24-hours a day, and print all kinds of jobs - food, pharmacy, textile or household chemicals,“ says Ivan Pivovarov, Director, Inkas LLC. “More than 5,000 customers from Kazakhstan and other CIS countries trust us, and we work hard to bring happiness to them, as well as the people who use goods packed with our labels and flexible packaging,” Ivan Pivovarov adds.

In addition to flexographic printing of all kinds of labels, Inkas LLC produces receipt tape for all types of cash register devices, paper rolls for fax machines, printers, teletypes and ATMs, and thermal labels with bar code for retail scales and printers.

Remain Leaders in The Industry
”We’re striving to improve quality, expand our product range, and remain leaders in our industry. The market keeps moving, and we received requests for products that could not be produced on our existing equipment, with queues building, negatively affecting deadlines,” Ivan Pivovarov continues.

“The FA-Line’s optimal price-to-quality ratio, and good selection of additional options, were decisive factors. With the new Nilpeter flexo printing press we are planning to produce new types of products that we could not produce before, and we hope the business will grow rapidly,” Ivan Pivovarov concludes.

A Very Important Player in the Market
“Nilpeter is delighted and highly appreciative that Inkas LLC has decided to invest in our FA-17, which, as stated earlier, is the first of its kind in Kazakhstan. Inkas LLC is a very important player in the market, and we are proud to announce the cooperation between our companies. The project was established in October 2019, and was spearheaded by our new agent for Russia and CIS, company "Prima Scelta"” says Dan Wissing, Area Sales Manager, Nilpeter A/S.

The 9-colour FA-17 installed at Inkas LLC in Kazakhstan is fitted with Nilpeter’s Advanced Automation, Registration, and Film Application Packages, and completed with features such as UV-curing and cooling technology, rail system, turn bar for filmic material, de- and re-lamination equipment, UV-lamination, rotary die-cutting with GAP-master, an embossing cassette, back-side slitting for edge trimming, automatic matrix removal, video inspection, and more.

Experienced Leadership and Skilled Specialists
Inkas LLC covers the full production cycle - from the development of layouts, to colour separation, manufacturing of photopolymer forms, and the release of finished high-quality products. To achieve the best results for their customers, Inkas LLC prides itself on experienced leadership and skilled specialists, working with modern, high-class equipment from Western manufacturers, and raw materials from the very best suppliers.
(Nilpeter A/S)

Cosmo Specialty Fibers Announces Operations Restart, Following Temporary Shutdown ...

Cosmo Specialty Fibers Announces Operations Restart, Following Temporary Shutdown ...  (Company news)

.. Due to COVID-19 Market Impacts

On December 15, 2020, Cosmo Specialty Fibers (Cosmo) began the employment recall processes, progressing toward full operations in early February 2021. After temporarily suspending operations in May 2020 due to slowing global economies, Cosmo has continued to satisfy strategic customer demand through planned inventory and is now experiencing market conditions which warrant restarting. Our customers, many of which supply the global retail clothing sector, have experienced consistent recovery for more than three months, resulting in strong demand for Cosmo lyocell and viscose pulp.

Our business fundamentals and overall strategy remain sound and intact. With the ongoing recovery, we plan on returning to our record-breaking performance of recent times. In fact, we made meaningful improvements during the temporary shutdown. The accomplishments during the outage were noteworthy in many respects:
• Made significant progress in expanding our customer footprint into new geographies and new markets,
• Trademarked our lyocell product, ZhenCelTM, a leading ultra-premium pulp for lyocell production,
• Substantially enhanced product quality with even higher levels of product consistency,
• Meaningfully reduced the environmental footprint of the business,
• Proactively completed several regulatory and maintenance related projects,
• Maintained full regulatory compliance while working closely with State authorities,and
• Continued to engage with Federal resources and external advisors ensuring Cosmo is best educated, informed, and positioned to de-risk our restart.

Our decisions are always driven by doing what is best for the long term, and our decision to begin the restart process follows that commitment. Our workforce is healthy and will return in almost full attendance. Our supply chain partners, while also impacted by the economic downturn, remain strong, resilient, and prepared to reengage. The Cosmo Board of Directors has reviewed the specific details of our restart plan and remain aligned with the timeline.

This current unprecedented business interruption will not deter Cosmo from maintaining our market leading position.
(Cosmo Specialty Fibers Inc.)

Ahlstrom-Munksjö's financial information in 2021 and change in the company's reporting language

Ahlstrom-Munksjö's financial information in 2021 and change in the company's reporting language  (Company news)

Ahlstrom-Munksjö plans to publish financial reports in 2021 as follows:
-Financial statements release 2020: February 10, 2021
-Interim report January-March 2021: April 27, 2021
-Half-year report January-June 2021: July 23, 2021
-Interim report January-September 2021: October 27, 2021

The annual report including financial statements for 2020 and the report of operations will be available on the company’s web site at during the week starting on February 22, 2021.

Ahlstrom-Munksjö has also decided to discontinue the use of Swedish as a reporting language as of January 1, 2021. The official reporting languages used in the company’s regulatory disclosures will be Finnish and English. By discontinuing the use of Swedish as a reporting language, Ahlstrom-Munksjö aims to ensure speed and efficiency in the company’s financial reporting and in the publishing of releases.

Ahlstrom-Munksjö's Annual General Meeting is planned to be held on Wednesday, March 24, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. EET. The AGM will be convened at a later date by Ahlstrom-Munksjö's Board of Directors.

A shareholder, who wishes to request a matter to be put on the agenda of the Annual General Meeting, must notify the Board of Directors in writing by January 18, 2021 by sending such request by mail to Ahlstrom-Munksjö Oyj, P.O. Box 329, FI-00101 Helsinki, Finland, to the attention of the Secretary of the Board.

On September 24, 2020, a consortium of investors announced a recommended public cash tender offer for all shares in Ahlstrom-Munksjö. The financial reporting schedule mentioned above may therefore be subject to change.
(Ahlstrom-Munksjö Corporation)

GPI Named to Newsweek’s 2021 List of America’s Most Responsible Companies

GPI Named to Newsweek’s 2021 List of America’s Most Responsible Companies  (Company news)

Graphic Packaging has been named to Newsweek’s 2021 list of America’s Most Responsible Companies based on a detailed analysis of Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG) factors. Graphic Packaging ranked #208 on the 2021 list.

“We are honored to be named to the list of America’s Most Responsible Companies,” said Michael Doss (photo), president and Chief Executive Officer. “With our Vision 2025 goals published in 2019, we emphasized our commitment to redefine leadership in the paperboard packaging industry. To achieve this, we set goals and identified ways we can continue to innovate for a healthier planet, support and develop our employees, champion our partners with sustainable packaging solutions, engage with our communities and operate responsibly. We are committed to the continued advancement of these initiatives as ESG factors are fundamental to how we operate our business and are critical to our success.”

America’s Most Responsible Companies were selected from a pool of over 2,000 companies based on publicly available key performance indicators derived from Corporate Annual Reports, Sustainability Reports and Corporate Citizenship Reports, in addition to an independent survey of 7,500 U.S. residents to evaluate company reputations. The final list, which spans 14 industries, recognizes 400 companies with the highest scores as the most responsible companies in the United States. While we are thrilled to have been ranked #208 on the list, we are even prouder to be ranked #1 of folding carton companies, #2 in paper packaging, and #19 in the materials category.

Graphic Packaging recently published its ESG Report and launched an ESG Hub within the Investor section of the company’s website. With the updated report, the company adopted the SASB framework and is aligned with GRI Core standards. A copy of the ESG Report, key highlights from the year as well as progress on goals, GRI/SASB indices, among other helpful information can be accessed here. Graphic Packaging strives to achieve best-in-class transparency and the company will update progress on the goals laid out in Vision 2025, as well as other news and detail on innovation and sustainability advancements at the company in its annual ESG Reports and through updates on the ESG Hub.
(Graphic Packaging Holding Company)

Sustainability Report by SÜDPACK

Sustainability Report by SÜDPACK  (Company news)

For the third time now, SÜDPACK has voluntarily published an extensive sustainability report. The current publication transparently communicates the progress made in 2018 and 2019 in the fields of environment, economy and social responsibility. Some of the most notable focal points include the roadmap for sustainable film packaging from SÜDPACK as well as the implementation of reusable material loops within the company itself.

For SÜDPACK, sustainability is an elementary component of corporate strategy. As a leading film manufacturer and pioneering partner in the development of sustainable packaging concepts, the company group has worked intensively on expanding its innovative product portfolio in recent years within the framework of its sustainability offensive. At the same time, various initiatives have been launched, which most particularly take material reduction, recyclability, renewable raw materials and a circular economy into account. These initiatives will make it possible to meet both the current and future needs of the packaging industry by minimizing resource consumption as much as possible in the production of packaging and by closing reusable material loops.

Compared to the two previous reports, the scope of this report has been expanded to include two international sites. In addition to the sites SÜDPACK Verpackungen GmbH & Co. KG and ecoform Multifol Verpackungsfolien GmbH & Co. KG with the production sites in Ochsenhausen, Erlenmoos, Schwendi and Erolzheim, the sites SÜDPACK Kłobuck Sp. z o.o. (Poland) and SÜDPACK Bioggio SA (Switzerland) have also been included in the communication. The production processes at all six sites have been developed and optimized so resources can be used in production even more efficiently than before.

Published every two years, the report is based on the leading international standards of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). SÜDPACK views its extensive sustainability reporting not only as a voluntary commitment to provide maximum transparency for its customers, business partners, stakeholders and employees, but above all “as part of an ongoing process of optimization within our company and as a key contribution to the ongoing advancement of an entire industry,” explained Erik Bouts, CEO of SÜDPACK. After all, “we can only face global challenges, such as climate change, ever-increasing pollution and developments in social interaction, when, in our view, all those bearing responsibility in the industrial and social realms contribute to an absolutely essential, holistic transformation and shoulder their responsibility.”

One of the target-oriented approaches taken by SÜDPACK has been to create the new division “CSR and Sustainability,” which will be within the sphere of Strategic Marketing. Based on a holistic sustainability strategy, it will be possible to implement new projects even more effectively and to increasingly consolidate the individual sustainability initiatives. To give just one example, the agenda includes the execution of projects that contribute to the carbon neutrality of the sites as well as reducing the carbon footprint of packaging materials from SÜDPACK.
(Südpack Verpackungen GmbH + Co KG)

Kadant Awarded $10 Million Order for Fiber Processing Systems

Kadant Awarded $10 Million Order for Fiber Processing Systems  (Company news)

Kadant Inc. (NYSE: KAI) announced it received two orders to supply recycled fiber processing systems from a containerboard producer in Asia with a value of approximately $10 million. The equipment will be used to process recycled corrugated boxes and produce top liner used in corrugated packaging. The orders were booked in the fourth quarter of 2020 and are expected to ship in 2021.

“We are pleased to have been selected to supply the fiber processing systems for these recycled containerboard machines,” said Jeffrey L. Powell, president and chief executive officer of Kadant. “Our leading position in fiber processing technology combined with our strong reputation for providing high-performance equipment were critical factors in being awarded this order.”
(Kadant Inc.)

KOLB accelerates digital post-printing after CorruJET 170 success

KOLB accelerates digital post-printing after CorruJET 170 success  (Company news)

-German corrugated board manufacturer says new CorruJET 170 is the heart of digital production
-Printing on brown liner and recycled materials on this quality level not possible previously even with conventional technologies
-Koenig & Bauer Durst answering customer demands for fast, automated, reliable and agile printing systems

Photo: The CorruJET 170 press at KOLB Digital Solutions

HANS KOLB Wellpappe has confirmed an accelerated growth path towards digital production after Koenig & Bauer Durst’s CorruJET 170 achieved high expectations. Fast time-to-market scenarios, increased versioning and reduced run lengths are major reasons for the strategic shift as customers continue to drive change.

The CorruJET 170 used for digital post-press printing on corrugated board is the crucial part of the extensive investments made by KOLB over recent years and is a centerpiece of its digital strategy. It is based in dedicated premises close to the group’s headquarters at Memmingen, Bavaria, Germany. The machine delivers high-resolution digital print at production speeds of up to 5,000 boards per hour, handles formats up to 1,700 x 1,300mm (66.9 x 51.2in) and a print resolution of 1200x600 dpi.

Sebastian Fromm, Production Manager at KOLB Digital Solutions, said: “There is no media in the KOLB Group that the CorruJET 170 doesn’t print. It doesn’t matter whether the substrate is coated, uncoated or even brown liner. Incredible flexibility and print quality, no need for post coating on uncoated boards. This is a very innovative, highly automated solution also for high-volume production with non-stop feeding and non-stop stacking. The CorruJET 170 is the benchmark for quality printing for uncoated markets, especially with the brown and white recycled substrates, which was not possible before, even with conventional technologies.

The variety of products we can print is incredible. Take our regular business as one example. Ten years ago, there would be one product, now you have the same product in four different varieties, each requiring special packaging that can only be produced digitally viably. Run lengths may be going down, but the varieties will continue to expand. This leads to stronger product diversification and, for us, the opportunities seem to be endless. Some on-demand jobs involve printing as little as 500 sheets, which takes just six minutes to complete, but the press is also used for orders of more than 20,000 sheets. There are almost no set-up costs, whatever the run length, and each sheet costs the same to print.”

The CorruJET 170 also benefits from having food safe inks, which is extremely important for the packaging market. The Koenig & Bauer water-based inks for the CorruJET 170 are formulations accepted in the Swiss Ordinance, EuPIA, Nestle Ink list and are fully GMP produced.

The CorruJET 170 press for the corrugated board industry was developed by Koenig & Bauer, which was able to call on its extensive experience already gained with the RotaJET. The combination of high quality and maximum throughput is a key distinguishing feature of the CorruJET 170. The incorporation of a coating unit provides for gloss or matt coating of the four-color images printed using water-based inks.

The KOLB Group develops and produces a broad spectrum of packaging, packaging materials and special corrugated board products. Group Managing Director Dr Bernhard Ruffing said: “The CorruJET 170 is a crucial part of the extensive investments we have made over recent years as part of our great efforts to optimize the technological process chain. Market changes mean that our customers demand fast turnarounds and increased versioning – all produced at the highest quality. Against this background, the focus is increasingly turning to the option of digital post-printing, especially with uncoated markets and brown paper substrate opportunities.”

The CorruJET 170 machine is now within the portfolio of the joint venture company Koenig & Bauer Durst set up in 2019. Robert Stabler, Managing Director of Koenig & Bauer Durst, said: “With the CorruJET 170, KOLB is extremely well equipped to respond to future customer demands as it continues to open up new market opportunities. The need for fast, automated, reliable and agile printing systems has never been greater in a fast-paced world where the only constant thing is change. Fast shifts in demand require an all-in-one digital solution to meet brands requirements, which we deliver in a partnership approach.”
(Koenig & Bauer Durst GmbH)

A new corrugated waste bin designed for the hygienic disposal of face masks

A new corrugated waste bin designed for the hygienic disposal of face masks  (Company news)

The use of face masks during the recent pandemic has justifiably grown to hundreds of millions worldwide. However, masks can easily end up littering public places or natural sites. Metsä Board, the leading European producer of premium fresh fibre paperboards and part of Metsä Group, partnered up with a packaging design agency Futupack and corrugated board converter Capertum to manufacture a corrugated mask bin for the specific disposal of face masks. The design of the bins paid special attention to the materials used to produce the bin and the usability and disposability of the bin.

Futupack is a Finnish company that designs and implements sustainable packaging solutions. “We wanted the mask bin to be as aesthetic as possible so that it could be placed easily into any indoor environment. The mask bin is delivered flat, and can be quickly assembled. In addition, full instructions on assembly for the consumers are printed on to the bin itself. When the mask bin is full, it is easy to close the lid, and the entire bin can be safely and hygienically disposed of with the incinerated waste,” says Jani Mäkipää, Lead Packaging Engineer at Futupack.

MetsäBoard Pro WKL 160 g/m2 coated white kraftliner was used as the top liner of the mask bin. The Finnish corrugated board converter Capertum printed the e-flute corrugated board in silk screen. The bin is light and robust thanks to the fresh fibres of the white kraftliner, and its stylish, lightweight design, makes it easy to place in various indoor public spaces.

“With urbanization and a growing population, hygienic waste management solutions are becoming increasingly important. The Covid-19 pandemic has brought its own challenges to waste management. We are happy to be able to offer a solution to the dilemma of mask waste,” says Ilkka Harju, Packaging Services Director EMEA & APAC at Metsä Board who worked on the design project with Futupack.
(Metsä Board Corporation)

EBB Acquires Warren Board

EBB Acquires Warren Board  (Company news)

Elliott Baxter & Company Limited (EBB) is delighted to announce the acquisition of Warren Board. EBB acquired 100% of Warren Board on Monday 14 December 2020.

Photo: Matt Elliott, Anne Ferguson and Barry Pincott

In their last filed accounts (October 2019), Warren Board had sales of £28 million and specialise in the supply of Board to the Carton Print Sector.

The acquisition of Warren Board will make EBB the largest board merchant supplier in the UK & Irish market. This latest move by EBB further strengthens the commitment to this sector, following the acquisition of UniBoard (Dublin) in July 2019.

Warren Board will continue to operate from both their Leicester based warehouse (which stores over 10,000 pallets of product), and their West Bromwich converting facility (which has the capacity to convert over 5,000 tonne of product a year). During 2021, EBB plan to integrate the Warren Board sales within the EBB Service network, offering enhanced delivery of the widest product portfolio throughout the UK and Ireland.
The EBB Group, across all divisions in The UK and Ireland, will now hold over 50,000 pallets of paper and board, available for next day delivery.

Quote: Matt Elliott, MD Elliott Baxter & Co Ltd
“Barry and his team have built a fantastic business, with great staff, loyal customers and excellent mill partners. Warren Board has been a leader in the supply of Carton Board grades for many years in the UK, as a competitor we have admired their professionalism, their stock range and the way they deal with the Carton Printers. Our new combined strength with Warren Board will see improved choice and better service to all of our UK and Ireland based customers.
The Elliott Baxter Group is now, not just the largest Independently owned Paper Merchant in UK & Ireland, but also the largest Carton Board Merchant in UK & Ireland.”

Quote: Barry Pincott, founder of Warren Board
“After 44 years building Warren into the company that it is today, the time is right for Anne Ferguson and I to fully retire.
With the help of our excellent Board of Directors, without whose help we could not have achieved the success we have today, it was felt we needed a partner who could invest and help us grow to reach our full potential.
We have known the Elliott family for many years and knew they were the right people to trust with our company. The synergy is perfect and could not be more hand in glove.
For many years we have been the largest independent Carton Board distributor in the UK, and now within EBB we can only see more success for the group as a whole.“

Quote: Chris Sandwell, Sales & Marketing Director - Elliott Baxter & Co Ltd
“We are delighted with the acquisition, the increased product range, additional storage capacity and strength of the Warren Board brand fit perfectly with the EBB Group.”
(Elliott Baxter & Co. Ltd - EBB Paper)

Toscotec successfully completes a dryer section rebuild at Aviretta in Germany

Toscotec successfully completes a dryer section rebuild at Aviretta in Germany  (Company news)

Toscotec successfully completed a post dryer section rebuild at German containerboard producer Aviretta. The project was executed according to the original schedule, despite Covid-19 restrictions. The paper machine (PM4) produces fluting from 60 to 130 g/m².

Toscotec supplied nine TT SteelDryers of over 7 m face width equipped with insulation system. One TT SteelDryer also features a ceramic/teflon cover to guarantee high cleanliness following the size press. The scope included condensate spoiler bars, steam joints, bearings and housings, and spares. Toscotec provided Aviretta with a complete set of services, including engineering, disassembly, erection, commissioning, and start-up assistance.

Thomas Reibelt, Project Manager for Aviretta GmbH, says, “The cooperation with Toscotec was very good right from the beginning. We are happy to have worked with a supplier who has such a significant experience with rebuilds. The new TT SteelDryers have been performing very well since start-up, with good results in drying capacity and energy efficiency.”

Stefano Baldi, Toscotec’s Project Manager, says, “We implemented this project during the Covid-19 restrictions. We couldn’t travel to the mill to take the necessary field data for our engineering design, like we normally do at the beginning of a new project. With full support from Aviretta, we never stopped progressing with our work and managed to complete the project according to the original schedule.”
(Toscotec S.p.A.)

BillerudKorsnäs: Restated figures according to new reporting structure

BillerudKorsnäs: Restated figures according to new reporting structure  (Company news)

As a consequence of a reorganization, BillerudKorsnäs changed its reporting structure as of 1 October 2020. To enable comparisons in coming financial reports, BillerudKorsnäs presents recalculated figures are presented for all quarters 2019 and the first three quarters 2020.

BillerudKorsnäs’ financial performance is reviewed in three operating segments: Product area Board, Product area Paper as well as Solutions and other.
• Product area Board includes sales and costs related to liquid packaging board, cartonboard and containerboard.

• Product area Paper includes sales and costs related to sack paper and kraft paper, which now also contains Fibreform®. In addition, product area Paper includes surplus pulp that is not used in the own production.

• Solutions and other includes sales and costs related to Managed Packaging. It also includes wood supply, Scandfibre Logistics AB, rental operations, dormant companies, Group-wide functions, Group eliminations, profit/loss from participation in associated companies, items affecting comparability, results from hedging of the Group’s net currency flows and revaluation of accounts receivables.
(BillerudKorsnäs AB (publ))

New generation of HydroMix stock mixing system from Voith features an automatically adjustable...

New generation of HydroMix stock mixing system from Voith features an automatically adjustable...  (Company news)

... mixing nozzle and compact design

-Excellent mixing quality of stock and whitewater
-Automatic adjustment and geometric optimization of the nozzle for consistently superior sheet quality
-Maximum flexibility for paper producers thanks to an extended operating window

Photo: The new generation of the HydroMix stock dilution system features an automatically adjustable stock nozzle, ensures an excellent mixing quality of stock and whitewater, and guarantees consistently superior sheet quality.

Voith has comprehensively optimized its HydroMix stock mixing system. The new generation of this tried and tested system features an automatically adjustable stock nozzle, ensures an excellent mixing quality of stock and whitewater, and guarantees consistently superior sheet quality. With a significantly expanded operating window, paper manufacturers benefit from maximum flexibility in the approach flow system of the papermaking process.

At the heart of the new generation of the stock mixing system is the automatically adjustable mixing nozzle that has been fundamentally optimized in terms of design and geometry, resulting in an excellent mixing quality of stock and whitewater and maximum homogeneity. The automated adjustment function of the patented nozzle aligns the stock consistency with the required target values and guarantees superior sheet quality further downstream the process chain.

In order to expand the operating window for the proven HydroMix and, in doing so, offer paper manufacturers the greatest possible flexibility, Voith has not only “This prevents turbulence, significantly increases the effectiveness of the system, and achieves optimal homogeneity of the high-consistency stock and whitewater mixture. In parallel with these benefits, the largest possible operating window can also be accommodated and a high degree of flexibility achieved in the operation of the system,” states Hermann-Josef Post, Product Manager Wet End Process at Voith.

Due to the optimized shape and optimal adjustability to the respective operating point, the pressure drop in the high-consistency feed is lower and the load on the high-consistency stock pump is relieved, giving rise to significant energy savings. The differential pressure linearly adds to the power requirement. In addition, the pump is kept in the optimal operating range, which further increases efficiency.

The space requirement is also significantly reduced due to the compact design of the new HydroMix. The length of the mixing zone is reduced by around 50 percent compared with the previous design, which increases the application potential in restricted installation spaces and reduces building investment costs.

The new generation of HydroMix can be combined with various whitewater flow options. A digital measurement of the gas content also permits precise control of deaeration chemicals, which reduces the use of chemicals and lowers operating costs. The new generation of HydroMix is complemented by an automated cleaning system that guarantees excellent cleanliness in the entire mixing system, avoids deposits and reduces the risk of web breaks.
(Voith Paper GmbH & Co KG)

Space-saving solution for outbound sorting at Zalando in Erfurt

Space-saving solution for outbound sorting at Zalando in Erfurt  (Company news)

Ferag AG has scored with a new flexible sorting solution for use in shipping at Zalando, with the Swiss materials handling specialist installing a space-saving Denisort Compact system at the Zalando logistics centre in Erfurt. The sorting capacity of this system is impressive, with the innovative tilting tray sorter able to process up to 4800 units of all shapes and sizes for shipment every hour. The system is able to sort both the typical Zalando boxes and also polybags made from recycled plastic, which are used increasingly for packaging textiles.

More and more people are shopping on the Internet, with over 65% of clothing and shoes now purchased online in Germany. One of the big winners here is Zalando, which has grown rapidly into Europe’s leading online platform for fashion and lifestyle since its foundation in Berlin in 2008. As a result of the coronavirus, business at Zalando saw a further boom in 2020. In the second quarter of 2020 alone, sales increased by 27% compared to the previous year. This situation is reflected in the logistics centres at the rapidly expanding company. The processes here have to be constantly adjusted in order to meet the company’s performance promises to its customers to the letter. According to Zalando itself, the company also strives to ensure that its workstations are as comfortable as possible through the automation of routines and processes, for example. This is also the case at the 120,000-square-metre logistics hub in Erfurt in the German state of Thuringia. Although only built in 2012, the centre is already one of the oldest Zalando sites. A few months ago, the logistics planners at the online retailer started looking for a solution that would allow sorting to additional shipping destinations in outbound business – and quickly found what they wanted at Ferag. This was no surprise, as the Swiss materials handling specialist had already made a name for itself at Zalando by supplying systems for the automatic disposal of used cardboard boxes. One of these systems has also been running flawlessly in Erfurt for several years now.

Optimum space utilization and scalability absolutely essential
As things turned out, the specifications from Zalando for the new sorting system ended up being very ambitious. Ultimately, the Denisort Compact system – which was developed specially by Ferag for applications in mail-order business – met all the criteria from the logistics planners and proved the best solution. The key requirements for the system were efficient utilization of the available space, the flexibility of the system, and the expansion possibilities. In existing buildings such as in Erfurt, this brought with it major challenges from the outset. However, thanks to its modular design – which uses any combination of standard segments and offers outstanding flexibility in terms of layout – the Denisort Compact system overcame this hurdle with aplomb. This was also the case for another point that was given the highest priority by the logistics planners at Zalando: the system had to be scalable without any major outlay in order to be prepared for future challenges. The consistently implemented modular system from the Ferag engineers once again showed what it was made of here. The fully automatic vertical sorter from Switzerland’s Zürcher Oberland can not only be set up rapidly, but can also be adapted easily to changing processes or increased throughput. Customers can choose from the outset how many standard modules they want. And should the user’s needs grow, a Denisort Compact system can be extended without any problems and any desired elements retrofitted at short notice. The short delivery and installation times resulting from the standardization and modular design give the system a decisive advantage over standard sorting systems.

Sorting of a wide variety of boxes and polybags
In addition to scalability and as small a footprint as possible, the decision makers at Zalando also had another essential requirement: the sorting system had to be able to handle both the normal Zalando boxes and also shipping envelopes and polybags, which are made of 80% recycled material at Zalando. Usually, a mixture of different packaging formats with their own feel, structure and dimensions creates major problems for the conveyor technology. However, Ferag took the trays that tilt to either side in the Denisort Compact system and optimized them for handling polybags and all kinds of parcels, thus eliminating the risk of damage that can occasionally occur in such cases. As a result, the system from Switzerland was also able to fulfil this requirement with ease. The trays used at Zalando are able to receive items with widely varying geometries – and thus virtually all packaging types – and transport them safely. The only limitation is the maximum weight the tray is able to carry, although this is still an impressive 15 kilograms.

Automatic control of 18 sorting destinations
The Denisort Compact system commissioned at Zalando in the spring of 2020 is 31 metres long. It is used in outbound business for the fine sorting of labelled articles to different shipping destinations, such as by country or postcode. The sorter is equipped with 18 chutes for the targeted ejection of items. In addition to these end stations, there are also two NOK and overflow sections where items with incorrect or illegible labels are sent. The chutes were arranged according to the customer’s wishes, thus enabling optimal handling during the removal and further processing of the packages. The sorter is currently supplied and loaded manually. In the long term, Zalando plans to have the goods fed into the Ferag system via an automatic feeder belt. The staff place the prepared, labelled packages into the trays on the sorter. Following automatic scanning and assignment of the destination, the packages are then ejected via the corresponding chutes. From here, they are removed by a member of staff and stacked on pallets, which are then transported to the outbound gates using forklift trucks and loaded into the lorries.

Test passed with flying colours – next system coming soon
The Denisort Compact line – which is able to sort up to 4800 units per hour – is extremely quiet in operation, which meant it was quickly met with the acceptance of the Zalando staff working in the immediate vicinity. This was also helped by the foil wrapping on the sorter, which was attached by Ferag in line with the corporate design at Zalando. At the same time, the system proved incredibly reliable right from the outset. Initial operation started during the time when order numbers – and thus deliveries – on the online platform rocketed due to the coronavirus. In other words, the system had to work at full capacity almost immediately. The system passed this test with flying colours – so much so that Zalando immediately purchased a virtually identical system from Ferag for its distribution centre in Mönchengladbach.
(Ferag AG)

Mondi helps to reduce plastic use and CO2 footprint with new paper-based diaper packaging ...

Mondi helps to reduce plastic use and CO2 footprint with new paper-based diaper packaging ...  (Company news)

... for Drylock

-Mondi has developed a paper-based packaging solution for Drylock Technologies' baby diapers
-The EcoWicketBags are recyclable, replacing the traditional plastic packaging for diapers
-CO2 footprint is significantly reduced with the innovative new products due to the use of renewable resources

Mondi, a global leader in packaging and paper, has launched a new paper EcoWicketBag for Drylock Technologies’ baby diaper ranges, bringing sustainable paper-based packaging to the hygiene market globally.

The global hygiene products manufacturer approached Mondi to create a more sustainable alternative to its existing plastic diaper packaging that would travel well, have strong shelf-appeal, and protect the product - while also using renewable resources and significantly reducing its CO2 footprint.

We approached Mondi because of their expertise in paper packaging and their extensive knowledge of the global hygiene market. Consumers are looking for more sustainable packaging that is kinder to the planet without compromising on the integrity of the product. With the EcoWicketBag, consumers can be confident of product quality and packaging sustainability,” said Werner Van Ingelgem, R&D director at Drylock Technologies.

A key advantage of using paper-based solutions is the recyclability of paper and that consumers are more likely to know how to dispose of it correctly. The EcoWicketBag can be placed in existing paper streams, even in countries with the strictest recycling regulations, thereby supporting the circular economy. An EcoWicketBag made out of fully compostable materials is also available.

Mondi also ensured that EcoWicketBag fits with Drylock Technologies’ existing plant processes, meaning it is the first paper wicket bag range that can be filled and sealed on existing machines.

We work closely with our clients using our customer-centric EcoSolutions approach to create packaging that is fit for purpose – using paper where possible, plastic when useful. With Drylock Technologies it was key to reduce the amount of plastic used, meet our customer’s sustainability targets and protect the products for consumers. By liaising closely and asking the right questions from the outset, we have been able to deliver on all of the above.
Claudio Fedalto, Chief Operating Officer Paper Bags, Mondi.
(Mondi Bags Austria GmbH)

Banco dati aggiornato per l'ultima volta: 08.01.2021 15:26 © 2004-2021, Birkner GmbH & Co. KG