Sappi Fine Paper North America has completed its $170 million capital conversion project at the Cloquet Mill in Minnesota to produce specialized cellulose, which is used in textile and consumer goods markets. The conversion initiated in 2011 was accomplished on time, within budget and safely says the company.
Sappi globally is one of the largest manufacturers of specialized cellulose in the world with capacity totaling to over 1.3 million metric tons per year. Specialized cellulose, also known as dissolving wood pulp, is a versatile raw material used by manufacturers to produce a wide range of products including textile fibers, pharmaceutical, beauty and household products.
"The Cloquet Mill is ideally suited to help Sappi secure its global leadership position regarding specialized cellulose. It is the newest pulp mill in America, close to its fiber basket and with a highly skilled and motivated workforce," says Ralph Boettger, CEO, Sappi Limited. "The mill adds to Sappi's flexibility in serving its global customer base and has, from start-up, produced excellent quality product. Cloquet's paper and now dissolving pulp capabilities are central to the ongoing success of Sappi in North America."
The company now has the capability to produce specialized cellulose on two continents including its South Africa expansion at the Sappi Ngodwana Mill and its Saiccor Mill in KwaZulu-Natal. With the Cloquet conversion now complete, the mill's specialized cellulose production is 330,000 metric tons per year.