SWEDEN – Finnish pulp and paper manufacturer, Stora Enso Stora Enso has invested €97 million (about US$112.63 million) to expand board production at its Skoghall site in Sweden. 

The investment at Skogall will enable Stora Enso to accelerate growth and profit in end-use segments, including liquid packaging board and coated unbleached kraftliner. 

In addition, the company will also initiate a “pre-feasibility study to convert the second, currently idle, line at its Oulu site in Finland, into a packaging board line”.  

“Skoghall is one of our key integrated production sites for eco-friendly packaging materials,” said Hannu Kasurinen, EVP Stora Enso’s Packaging Materials division. 

“The investment strengthens Stora Enso’s capability to produce high-quality and cost-competitive consumer board grades within the growing core segments of liquid and food packaging.” 

The Skoghall expansion, expected to be complete in the second half of 2023, will  increase the facility’s annual packaging board production by approximately 100,000 tonnes to over 900,000 tonnes in total. 

Stora Enso shuts two mills in Sweden 

Earlier, Stora Enso shuts down paper production at Kvarnsveden and Veitsiluoto mills, reducing the company’s paper capacity by 565,000 tpy of SC paper and improved newsprint, and 790,000 tpy of woodfree uncoated and coated magazine paper. 

According to Stora Enso, the closures were prompted by significant overcapacity in printing, writing, and publishing paper markets in Europe which resulted in historically low prices that negatively impacted mills’ cost position and profitability. 

Meanwhile, Stora Enso has introduced NaturaFluff Eco,  a new fluff pulp grade with a lower carbon footprint, targeted at producers of hygiene products – such as baby diapers, incontinence pads, and feminine care.  

“By removing bleaching from the production process and only treating the pulp with oxygen to remove lignin, we have produced a fluff pulp with a significantly lower carbon footprint, while still providing the excellent performance properties of our regular fluff pulp,” says Kirsi Seppäläinen, SVP Marketing, Competitive Intelligence and Product Management at Stora Enso’s Biomaterials division. 

“This new NaturaFluff pulp grade fulfils all the requirements of a purely natural raw material as it  is made from wood and comes from sustainably managed forests.” 

Q3 sales rise

Stora Enso also recently reported its third quarter of this year where sales revenues jumped driven by higher prices and deliveries. 

The company’s sales totaled €2.5bn (US$2.9bn), representing a 23.9% increase from the same period of last year (FY20). 

Stora Enso’s operational earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) rose to €410m (US$476m) in the same period.  

The increase was attributed to higher sales volumes and prices, primarily in biomaterials, wood products and packaging materials. 

Stora Enso expects its operational EBIT for FY21 to be higher than that of FY20 but has maintained its annual outlook for the full year. 

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