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Sappi Completes Cloquet Mill Conversion For Specialized Cellulose Production

Boston-based Sappi Fine Paper North America, a subsidiary of South Africa-based wood pulp and paper producer Sappi Ltd., has announced the completion of the conversion of its kraft pulp mill in Cloquet, Minn., for production of specialized cellulose, also called dissolving wood pulp, and used in applications including textile fibers as well as household, beauty and pharmaceutical products. The company invested $170 million in the project, which will enable production of 330,000 metric tons of specialized cellulose annually (See " Sappi To Convert Minnesota Pulp Mill For Chemical Cellulose Production," TextileWorld.com, April 10, 2012).

Cloquet Mill produces pulp using batch cooking technology, which can be used for making both kraft pulp and specialized cellulose. In addition to the conversion project, Sappi recently invested $15 million to make improvements in its coated paper production system at the plant.

"The Cloquet Mill is ideally suited to help Sappi secure its global leadership position regarding Specialised Cellulose. It is the newest pulp mill in America, close to its fiber basket and with a highly skilled and motivated workforce," said Ralph Boettger, CEO, Sappi Ltd., adding that the mill's production will contribute to the company's flexibility to serve its customers worldwide.

Sappi reports its Specialised Cellulose division is the largest producer of specialized cellulose globally, with a total annual capacity of more than 1.3 million metric tons from two manufacturing facilities in South Africa and the Cloquet mill.

November 12, 2013