Mondi adds to kraft paper capacity

European packaging firm starts up what it calls specialty kraft paper machine in Czech Republic.

January 20, 2021

United Kingdom-based Mondi Group says it has started up a new paper machine at its mill in Štětí, Czech Republic, that is dedicated to producing 100-percent-recyclable specialty kraft paper for shopping bags. The paper is made “using a combination of fresh and recycled fibers to prioritize sustainability without compromising on strength,” the packaging and paper producer says.

The company says the 67 million euros ($81.3 million) investment in the machine had led to “Europe’s first dedicated paper machine for specialty kraft paper grades made out of fresh and recycled fiber for retail and online shopping bags.”

The paper machine will produce up to 130,000 metric tons of paper per year, “meaning Mondi will have the largest product portfolio for consumer shopping bags in Europe,” according to the firm.

The EcoVantage two-ply paper produced on the new machine will be part of a European specialty kraft paper market that is expected to grow steadily, driven by legislation to eliminate discarded plastic shopping bags and consumer preferences to move away from single-use plastic, Mondi says.

“We want to offer converters and brand owners sustainable, 100-percent-recyclable paper-based products for their retail and online shopping packaging,” says Kalle Taari, head of strategy and product management, kraft paper, at Mondi. “The papers produced on this machine will offer recycled fiber-based products with a natural look, great printability and strength properties, all prerequisites for consumer shopping bags.”

Mondi manages forests and produces pulp, paper and plastic films and develops and makes industrial and consumer packaging. In 2019, Mondi had revenue of 7.27 billion euros ($8.82 billion).