MONTREAL — Montreal-based Resolute Forest Products Inc. has announced it will construct a commercial plant specializing in the production of cellulose filaments at its Kenogami paper mill in Quebec as well as investing in upgrades to the mill, at a total cost of $38 million.
The filaments are a new sustainable biomaterial derived from wood fibre that is mechanically processed using renewable sources, without chemicals or enzymes, resulting in a low carbon footprint, stated a Jan. 15 release. The filaments can be integrated into commercial and consumer products from many industries, including transportation, construction and energy.
The cellulose filaments will be marketed with the help of Performance BioFilaments Inc., a joint venture established in 2014 by Resolute and Mercer International Inc. The extraction technology was developed by FPInnovations Inc.
Resolute will invest $11 million to modernize the Kenogami paper mill in order to produce high-grade SCA+ supercalendered paper.
The project will be funded in part by Quebec’s Department of Forests, Wildlife and Parks ($2.5 million), Investissement Quebec ($4.2 million) and Natural Resources Canada ($4.9 million).
Resolute Forest Products was formerly known as AbitibiBowater.
“Our investment in cellulose filaments represents an opportunity to enter into non-traditional growth markets,” stated Yves Laflamme, president and chief executive officer, in the release. “The cellulose filament and Kenogami mill optimization projects will create synergies within our network of operations in Saguenay‒Lac-Saint-Jean.”