June 8, 2022 - Paper Excellence said that it has received $4.5 million from the Investments in Forest Industry Transformation (IFIT) program. This funding will help support an important transformation project taking place at the company's Catalyst Port Alberni mill on the west coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada.
According to Paper Excellence, the $4.5 million will be invested at Catalyst Port Alberni to expand the mill's production capacity for food packaging papers. Traditionally, this mill produced printing and writing grades; however, demand for these products has been in steady decline. Transitioning to food grade papers means meeting growing market demand, providing sustainable alternatives to single-use plastic serving containers, and advancing BC's circular economy.
The new grades will be produced using unique pulping capabilities developed at the Catalyst Port Alberni mill that net a higher yield in fiber use. As a result, the mill will be able to increase the amount of food packaging materials it produces but will use less residual wood fibre to do so.
IFIT is a federal program that provides capital funding to support transformative projects by forest sector firms to diversify into new product streams and implement innovative process improvements to ensure industry competitiveness.
"This funding from IFIT will help Paper Excellence achieve our vision for modernizing our paper production on BC's coast," said Graham Kissack, Vice President, Environment, Health & Safety and Corporate Communications. "We are proud to be producing sustainable, value-added forest products that will meet the market demands of the future."
Catalyst Port Alberni employs 310 full time people on Vancouver Island, supports 800 indirect jobs in BC, and makes an economic contribution of $500 million annually.
Paper Excellence, headquartered in British Columbia, is a diversified manufacturer of pulp and specialty, printing, writing, and packaging papers. The company operates seven mills and a large-scale cargo distribution centre in Canada producing and shipping over 2.8 million tonnes annually. To learn more, visit: www.paperexcellence.com.
SOURCE: Paper Excellence
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