On 6 July 2008, SCA Packaging announced plans to rebuild its corrugated board plant. SCA Packaging is Europe’s leading provider of customer-oriented packaging solutions and part of the SCA Group. The new plant will be located in Tournebride business park in Le Bignon, France, 20km from the original facility, also known as Papeteries Léon Clergeau. SCA requires an investment of €46m over a period of three years on the new plant.

Over the last 45 years SCA has made regular investments to modify its old plant. However, these investments showed limitations in accommodating future increasing and changing customer demands and to meet new market requirements. Another reason for building the new plant was to enable the plant to handle large-scale undertakings. The new plant is expected to provide services to customers based on their specific requirements.

The ground-breaking ceremony for the new plant took place in July 2008 and its construction is expected to be completed by the end of 2009. The old plant employs 180 people who are expected to be transferred to the new plant.

The new facility will be spread over an area of 30,000m² on a plot of 10ha. By rebuilding its plant, SCA Packaging will increase its processing capacity to 80,000t a year from 65,000t a year.

The plant will manufacture and process corrugated cardboard using state-of-the-art equipment. It will mostly serve customers situated within a 100km radius. Almost 90% of customers are expected to come from the fresh and processed food packaging in the Pays de Loire regions in France.

“By rebuilding its plant, SCA Packaging will increase its processing capacity to 80,000t a year from 65,000t.”

Construction

SCA filed for a building permit towards the end of September 2007. The company also completed the necessary administrative work required for building the new plant during that time. Site preparation work began in January 2008 although unpredictable weather hampered progress of construction works.

The Le Bignon town hall accorded the building permit to SCA in April 2008. Halfway through May 2008, SCA had started the concrete frame assembly.

Equipment installed

Several new pieces of equipment are being installed at the new plant. A new package UPS was supplied by BHS, and its installation required 40 trucks to transport all the components of the equipment.

Other new equipment includes a combined 924 Martin last generation, an automatic cutter Martin (16×28), a Bobst Mastercut 1700 and machinery for the manufacture of American cases and trays.

Technology

The new plant will adopt lean manufacturing and incorporate the highest industry standards in hygiene and traceability. Focus will also be on optimising the supply chain to improve response times while handling customer orders. With the construction of the new plant, SCA will be able to provide customised packaging solutions such as high-quality printing.

The old facility was ISO-certified in 1996 and includes an engineering department and laboratory: both will be disposed of after the construction of the new plant.

Environmental measures

SCA has included a number of environmental enhancements in the new plant. The most significant includes installation of new equipment to reduce carbon dioxide and other emissions. The boilers at the plant will be converted to burn natural gas as fuel.

Another key feature will be a major improvement in waste-water treatment. All effluent from the plant will be treated onsite.