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Modernization, abundant fibre make mill competitive.

Modernization, abundant fibre make mill competitive

After a decade of modernization and expansion, Canadian Pacific Forest Products in Dryden has concluded the upgrading program at its Dryden mill.

According to technical services manager M.J. Fenton, "There are no major projects planned for the near future. Since 1980 we have installed a new woodroom, a stud mill, a digester, a bleach plant, a pulp machine, a cauticizing plant, two white-paper machines, finishing (sheeting) operations, shipping facilities and a new turbo-generator."

A future technological change will be a shift in CPFP's papermaking process from an acid to an alkaline base. Acid papers have a short life-span compared to the 300-year predicted life of acid-free paper.

Pfizer Chemicals of New York has facilitated this move with the construction of its chemical plant adjacent to the mill's property. The plant utilizes flue gasses from the lime kiln to produce calcium carbonate which replaces other fillers such as clay which was imported in a slushy form from Georgia.

Fenton believes the greatest challenge for the pulp and paper industry is "to re-establish a positive public opinion about pulp and paper products and that the use of forests as a renewable resource is a sound, positive business practice for Canadians."

"More and more of our customers are requesting information regarding our corporate and division position on the environment. Positive statements in this regard can only have a beneficial effect on our market position," he says.

The Canadian pulp and paper industry has embarked on a three-year national communications program to better inform the public about the industry, particularly with regard to its environmental performance. The communications program will "focus on the industry's environmental statement concerning sustained development, dioxins, recycling and forest renewal."

MODERNIZATION

Changes at the Dryden mill over the past 10 years have meant the replacement of 80 per cent of the original facility which began operation in 1913 as a kraft pulp mill.

The initial commitment to this latest phase of modernization and expansion came in 1979 with the purchase of the Dryden mill by Great Lakes Forest Products. In an effort to maintain a competitive edge in the international pulp and paper market, the company invested $350 million to renovate the facility.

Projects included a new wood room in 1982 which handles 700,000 cords per year (predominantly jack pine and spruce), a new pulp machine in 1982 which produces 780 metric tons of bleached kraft pulp per day, a stud mill in 1983 with a running capacity of 265,000 board feet per day and a new white-paper machine which produces 300 metric tons of white paper per day.

To meet government standards for control of liquid wastes, air emissions and odor, Great Lakes designed a primary and secondary effluent treatment plant for the Dryden mill.

The approved merger of Great Lakes Forest Products with Canadian International Paper Inc. of Montreal in 1988 saw the Dryden mill acquired by the newly created Canadian Pacific Forest Products. It further invested $250 million to upgrade the facility. The most noticeable addition was a second white-paper machine (the Trillium) rated at 500 tons of paper per day and featuring state-of-the-art computer production controls.

Canadian Pacific Forest Products' commitment to high technology and product diversification let it maintain a strong market position in a decade when older, specialized virgin-fibre mills in Canada were hit hard by reduced prices, shrinking market shares and a glut of products such as newsprint on U.S. and Canadian markets.

PHOTO : Completing a 10-year modernization of the facility, management of the Canadian Pacific Forest Products' mill in Dryden is now turning its attention to re-establishing a positive public opinion about the pulp and paper industry.
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Title Annotation:Focus on Dryden; Canadian Pacific Forest Products Ltd.
Author:Hopper, Jim
Publication:Northern Ontario Business
Date:Aug 1, 1990
Words:615
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