US-based KapStone Paper and Packaging has announced that its mill in Longview, Washington, has restarted its #11 paper machine.

According to the company, this is in accordance with a contingency plan to operate the mill at the time of a strike.

The latest machine is the second of the mill’s five paper machines that have restarted following a work stoppage initiated by the AWPPW union Local 153 on 27 August 2015.

Paper machine #10 was the first one to restart operation. It produces containerboard primarily for KapStone’s corrugated box plants located in the Pacific Northwest region.

"We continue to live up to our commitment to provide customers with a broad range of products and services, despite the strike."

The machine was restarted on 31 August after a maintenance outage that followed the stoppage.

KapStone’s paper machine #11 produces a variety of kraft paper products and extensible kraft papers for external customers in the US as well as abroad.

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Shortly after paper machine #10 restarted, the mill began shipping products to customers according to its contingency plan.

The mill is expected to boost production with its #10 and #11 machines.

KapStone Paper and Packaging kraft paper division president Randy Nebel said that employee teams from across the US are working to ensure a smooth return to full production.

Nebel said: "We continue to live up to our commitment to provide customers with a broad range of products and services, despite the strike."

On 27 August, KapStone received a notice of a work stoppage from the AWPPW Local 153 union and has been preparing for a potential strike since the union voted down its prior offers.

Image: Paper machine #10 produces containerboard for KapStone’s corrugated box plants. Photo: courtesy of Gualberto107 via