Environment & Sustainability
Williamette Falls Paper trials first run of non-wood paper
November 6, 2019 By P&PC Staff
Willamette Falls Paper Company in West Linn, Oregon has made its first successful trial of non-wood paper grades using pulp from local agricultural waste – producing both coated and uncoated grades using 10 per cent non-wood pulp fibre.
Additional machine and press trials are ongoing to refine the paper properties and specifications. However, preliminary outcomes from press room trials and initial customer feedback show promising results. The mill expects to announce the commercial production of coated and uncoated grades by mid-November.
“We want to be the first coated paper mill to offer non-wood grades made in the U.S. and sourced with local agricultural waste, in this case, straw,” says Phil Harding, director of technology and sustainability at Willamette Falls Paper Company. “Our long-term focus is sustainable papermaking, and successful trials using non-wood raw materials is another step toward this goal.”
Working with several key suppliers, including materials company Trinseo, Willamette Falls is working on developing both uncoated and coated grades that will have similar characteristics to the mill’s standard grades. The company is a non-integrated mill, capable of making coated and uncoated grades with an annual capacity of 260,000 tons, and is investing in the use of non-wood fibres as an alternative pulp source.
“Trinseo is pleased to partner with Willamette Falls Paper Company in the development of the first domestic non-wood containing coated papers,” says Todd Crook, North America latex binders business director for Trinseo. “Finding innovative ways to increase the use of sustainable materials is a critical focus for us, the industry and modern society, so we’re thrilled to continue our support in their development and commercialization of this new product.”
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