Metsä Board Husum Unveils Expanded Folding Boxboard Capacity to Meet Growing Packaging Demand

22 November 2023

Metsä Board has successfully concluded its ambitious project to expand the folding boxboard production capacity at its integrated pulp and paperboard mill located in Husum, Sweden.

This expansion, particularly focused on modernizing board machine 1 (BM1), has significantly boosted the annual production capacity of folding boxboard (FBB) by an impressive 200,000 tons, soaring to a total of 600,000 tons. With this enhancement, Husum BM1 now stands as Europe’s largest and most advanced paperboard machine, reinforcing Metsä Board’s stature as the premier European provider of folding boxboards.

This strategic augmentation of folding boxboard capacity aligns with the escalating demand for packaging materials derived from renewable resources. The BM1 specializes in crafting lightweight yet sturdy folding boxboards, a feature that not only conserves raw materials but also contributes to shrinking the carbon footprint associated with packaging materials.

The expansion initiative primarily entailed extending the board machine’s length and augmenting its drying capacity. However, it’s crucial to note that this extension formed just one facet of a comprehensive project. Concurrently, enhancements were implemented across various segments of the machine line to improve operational smoothness and ensure consistent product quality. Upgrades were made to the off-machine coater, accommodating higher speeds and larger jumbo rolls. Moreover, the logistical aspects of transporting jumbo rolls within the site, between board machines, coaters, extrusion coating lines, and winders, have now been fully automated. The mill anticipates reaching its full production capacity by the culmination of 2025.

Mika Joukio, CEO of Metsä Board, emphasized the significance of this capacity increase, stating, “By elevating Husum’s production capacity, we are meeting the escalating demand for packaging materials that endorse the principles of the circular economy.” He further highlighted that the recent overhaul of the Husum pulp mill’s initial phase not only bolsters bio-based energy production but also enhances overall energy efficiency within the mill, thereby further diminishing the carbon footprint of their products. This, in turn, assists clients in achieving their sustainability goals.

The surplus capacity will predominantly cater to the North American and European markets, where a sustained surge in demand for Metsä Board’s superior lightweight paperboards is anticipated. The Husum BM1 specializes in manufacturing premium lightweight folding boxboards ranging from 175 to 355 g/m². These products find extensive application in packaging dry and frozen foods, chocolates, confectioneries, pharmaceuticals, healthcare items, beauty care products, as well as in food service and graphic applications.

The successful completion of this expansion project heralds a new chapter for Metsä Board Husum, poised to meet burgeoning market needs while staying committed to sustainability and innovation in the packaging industry.