Finnish pulp and paper manufacturer Stora Enso has announced the completion of its Oulu paper mill’s conversion to produce packaging board.

The €350m conversion project started in May 2019 and involved converting a paper machine 7 into high-quality virgin-fibre-based kraftliner production.

Stora Enso Packaging Materials Division executive vice-president Hannu Kasurinen said: “Oulu Mill will utilise state-of-the-art technology to produce a strong, material-efficient, high-quality kraftliner product.

“This allows us to tap into premium packaging segments with strong growth potential, such as food contact and e-commerce.”

Since mid-January, the pulp mill has been operating while the newly converted machine is still in the start-up phase.

The new packaging machine should achieve its designed production capacity by the end of this year.

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Kraftliner is typically used in packaging segments that need high strength, purity and quality. The production will target global export markets.

Stora Enso president and CEO Annica Bresky said: “Completing the Oulu Mill conversion is an important step in our transformation and responds to increasing global market demand for circular and eco-friendly packaging materials.”

The new kraftliner line has a capacity of 450,000t a year.

Furthermore, the pulp mill and drying machine can produce nearly 530,000t per year of unbleached brown pulp, of which approximately 150,000t are sold externally.