FPInnovations and Kruger Dedicate Cellulose Filament Demonstration Plant

The world's first cellulose filament production facility is located in the existing Kruger mill in Trois-Rivieres, Quebec, Canada.

June 17, 2014 - FPInnovations and Kruger Inc. today dedicated the world's first cellulose filament (CF) demonstration plant at Kruger's Trois-Rivieres Mill.

The dedication ceremony was attended by Mr. Laurent Lessard, Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks and Minister responsible for the Centre-du-Quebec region; Mr. Jean-Denis Girard, Member for Trois-Rivieres, Minister for Small and Medium Enterprises, Regulatory Streamlining and Regional Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Mauricie region; Mr. Dave Peterson, B.C's Chief Forester and Assistant Deputy Minister, Tenures, Competitiveness and Innovations, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations; Mr. Pierre Lapointe, President and CEO of FPInnovations; and Mr. Daniel Archambault, Executive Vice President and COO of Kruger's Industrial Products Division.

The 5-ton per day plant will provide enough CF tonnage to permit commercialization and application development.

CF is a new material extracted from wood pulp fibres that is revolutionary because of its unique properties. According to FPInnovations, CF has major potential for Canada's forest sector because of its wide range of applications from existing paper products to new products. The nature of CF allows it to be combined with many materials to develop a wide range of high-value products currently sought after by many Canadian and international industry sectors and is expected to contribute significantly to the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC)'s Vision 2020 ambitious economic objectives.

"This demonstration plant is a great example of how collaboration and strategic investment in research and development can lead to the development of innovative new products that will transform the pulp and paper industry while supporting traditional markets," said FPInnovations' President and CEO Pierre Lapointe. "The inauguration of this facility places Canada in the pole position of global competition to develop the next generation of cellulose-based materials."

"Kruger has been innovating for 110 years and it is with great pride that we are celebrating the dedication of this demonstration plant that promotes a technology of the future," said Daniel Archambault, Executive Vice President and COO, Industrial Products Division, Kruger. "The unique potential of cellulose filaments, combined with our R&D efforts, will help the Canadian forest industry progress and have a bright future."

An intensive concurrent R&D program will support the industrial scale up for applications in different commercial pulps, papers, packaging, tissues and towels, as well as thermosets, thermoplastics, coatings, construction panels and non-wovens.

This groundbreaking research and innovation project represents investments to date totaling $43.1 million, including funding from Natural Resources Canada, through the Investments in Forest Industry Transformation (IFIT) Program, as well as a grant from Quebec's Ministry of Forests, Wildlife and Parks, a loan from Investissement Quebec, financial backing from the Government of British Columbia, a contribution from Kruger Inc. and funds from FPInnovations' pulp, paper and bioproducts industry members.

SOURCE: FPInnovations and Kruger Inc.