The packaging giant announced last week that the three-year cash injection, one of the largest by any UK paper manufacturer, at its Townsend Hook facility in Kent, England, was scheduled to be fully operational by the end of 2014.
SK is a leading European paper manufacturer with an annual output reaching 4.7M tonnes. It produces a range of packaging for the food industry – including fresh foods as well as retail-ready, intermediate, and bag-in-box for beverage suppliers.
The project will see the installation of a five-metre lightweight recycled container board machine that will supply corrugated material for all SK’s plants.
The new equipment sourced from Cartiera di Cadidavid will replace two existing container board machines, and increase the site capacity of FSC certified, recycled paper per annum by over 8% from 240,000 to 260,000 tonnes.The firm said the security of supply and the ability to offer a wide array of corrugated paper were key to its on-going strategy. It also operates a second English mill in Birmingham.
This security of supply is enhanced by its recycling organisation operating a fully closed loop system from recovered fibre, to paper, to box and back, it added.
“This will secure the supply of paper for all of Smurfit Kappa’s packaging operations in the UK and Ireland,” a company spokesman told FoodProductionDaily.com. “We are an integrated operation so we do not rely on any other supplier to bring material in from outside. Controlling the whole supply chain is very important to us.”
SK said it would ensure that the supply of paper to its customer base is uninterrupted during the complex installation and commissioning of the modern equipment.
Continuity and quality
Chris Allen, CEO, Smurfit Kappa Paper UK comments: “This investment in the current financial climate shows Smurfit Kappa’s commitment to the UK, Ireland and Pan-European customers of our Corrugated and Paper divisions."
He added: “At a time of considerable change in the UK and European packaging markets, it is vitally important for our customers that continuity, innovation and quality of supply is maintained at all times."