Stora Enso has completed the conversion of its Oulu paper mill in Finland for production of packaging board. The pulp mill has been in production since mid-January and the newly converted machine is in a start-up phase. The project began in May 2019 following a decision to invest Euro 350 million, and it was completed within the budget frame. The packaging machine will now be ramped up during the 1Q 2021 and is expected to reach its designed production capacity by the end of this year.
The new line producing kraftliner will serve global customers in demanding packaging end-uses that require strength, purity and strong visual appearance features. The product, AvantForteTM by Stora Enso, has three fiber layers, making it the strongest kraftliner in Stora Enso’s portfolio. Packaging applications include fresh, fatty or moist food, as well as high-end e-commerce packaging.
In the conversion project, one of the two former paper machines was converted for packaging board production. The pulp mill and drying machine were modified to produce unbleached brown pulp (530,000 tonnes annually), out of which about 150,000 tonnes are sold externally. The capacity of the new world-class kraftliner line is 450,000 tonnes per year. When fully ramped up within a year, Oulu Mill will generate a Euro 300 million annual sales increase for the Packaging Materials division.
The conversion of Oulu Mill also enables the strengthening of Packaging Materials division’s sheet service. Lumipaper sheeting plant in Antwerp, which is being converted from paper to primarily board sheeting, will utilise cutters from Oulu and provide a fast sheet service in Continental Europe.
Approximately 400 people are employed on the mill site, including facilities personnel and logistics staff. The mill’s wood consumption, mainly purchased from private forest owners in Northern Finland, will increase by 0.5 million m3 to 2.4 million m3 annually.
Stora Enso is a leading global provider of renewable solutions in packaging, biomaterials, wooden construction and paper.