The company says the investment will help it to acquire equipment that will increase its production of food packaging, primarily for the fresh protein market.
$15 million will go toward the Cascades Inopak plant in Drummondville, Quebec. The funds will be used to expand the existing building and to install a high-performance recycled polyethylene terephthalate (rPET) film manufacturing line that includes a built-in decontamination unit. Cascades says this will make it possible to significantly increase the production capacity of Integral packaging, which is made from rPET, is recyclable and allows food in certain markets—such as fresh protein—to be kept for double the amount of time, thus reducing food waste.
Nearly $6 million will be invested in the Kingsey Falls Plastiques Cascades plant to modernize equipment, notably by adding a new extrusion line and two recycling lines, which will increase the production capacity by 25 percent and double the plant’s internal recycling capacity. The Kingsey Falls plant produces EVOK, the first polystyrene (PS) foam tray in North America to contain at least 25 percent recycled materials, according to Cascades.
“The strategic investments announced today will strengthen Cascades’ position in the food packaging segment, by increasing our production capacity thus providing the tools to increase our market share,” says Cascades President and CEO Mario Plourde. “They will generate more than 10 new jobs, primarily in the production and sales sectors, and will consolidate the 216 jobs that already exist in these two units. We are particularly proud of the fact that we lend our recovery expertise to the food sector and that we are taking the fight against food waste to yet another level.”
Luc Langevin, president and chief operating officer of Cascades Specialty Products Group, says, “In addition to our fresh protein containers, we are pleased to provide our customers with produce packaging that offers unique environmental added value. Cascades is the first company in North America to manufacture low-density PET packaging containing 80 percent recycled PET. Compared to the competition we can reduce the quantity of materials by approximately 10 percent for each container made. In addition to using fewer resources, our products are recyclable and provide optimum performance.”
The announcement regarding these investments was attended by Dominique Anglade, Deputy Premier, Minister of Economy, Science and Innovation; Alexandre Cusson, Mayor of Drummondville; as well as Cascades customers, suppliers and employees, among others. Cascades acknowledges the government’s contribution to this project in the form of a $6 million loan from Investissement Québec. Furthermore, Drummondville has begun infrastructure work in order to make the expansion of Cascades Inopak possible.
Founded in 1964, Cascades produces, converts and markets packaging and tissue products that are composed mainly of recycled fibers. The company employs 11,000 women and men, who work in close to 90 production units in North America and Europe.