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Irving Tissue opens $470M plant in Georgia, announces additional $400M investment


November 13, 2019
By P&PC Staff

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Irving Tissue Grand Opening Macon GeorgiaIrving Tissue held a grand opening for its new planat in Macon, Georgia. Photo supplied by JD Irving Ltd.

Irving Tissue has officially opened its $470-million tissue plant in Macon, Georgia and, based on a new, additional $400-million investment, will soon double its capacity.

An opening ceremony was held Nov. 13 with Irving Tissue president Robert K. Irving and other local dignitaries to celebrate both the official opening of the plant and the additional investment.

“It is a great day for Macon, the state of Georgia and Irving Tissue. We’re pleased to be expanding our business in the United States. We knew that this plant’s strategic location would allow us to reach key markets and help to drive our growth,” said Irving at the event. “Our customers’ enthusiastic support of its state-of-the-art technology has meant that our new plant is already at capacity, so we’re thrilled to announce the second phase of this expansion project.”

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Irving Tissue’s Macon plant is located on Allen Road in the Sofkee Industrial Park and employs more than 200 people. It produces ultra-premium quality household paper products including soft bath tissue and high-quality paper towel that is both strong and absorbent.

The first phase of the expansion involved 1.5 million person hours of work for contractors during construction with over 1,000 people on site at peak. Upwards of 50 Georgia companies were contracted during the build with dozens more subcontracted. Phase Two of the project will begin immediately and is expected to involve approximately one million person hours of work for contractors.

The second phase of the project represents an additional $400 million investment, adding another 150 jobs and will be completed by January 2022. “We’ve already ordered an additional ThruAir Dry machine that will be a duplicate of what we already have in our Macon plant,” said Irving. “This facility is part of an integrated value chain from sustainably managed forests to the store shelf. Most of the pulp for Macon products comes from our mill in Saint John, New Brunswick.”

Macon-Bibb Country Mayor Robert A.B. Reichert, who attended the event, said, “J.D. Irving, Ltd. is a well-respected company with a North American footprint. We are thrilled and delighted they have chosen to locate and expand their facility for their consumer products division – Irving Tissue – in Macon-Bibb County.”

Construction of the Macon plant doubled Irving Tissue’s annual ThruAir Dry capacity, increasing it by 75,000 tonnes, the equivalent of 15 million cases; Phase Two will increase that to a 30 million case capacity in Macon.