Resolute Inaugurates New Cellulose Filament Plant in Canada

Resolute Forest Products Inc. inaugurates its new commercial-scale plant for the production of cellulose filaments at its Kénogami paper mill in Saguenay, Quebec, Canada.

Cellulose filaments, also known as nanofibrillated cellulose, are a novel biomaterial derived from wood fibre, which can be used as a natural additive in many products to improve technical performance. Announced in 2020, the construction of the CAD27 (USD20) million facility was part of a CAD38 (USD28) million investment project in the company’s Kénogami mill.

Cellulose filaments are a significant step into new markets for Resolute. They are mechanically processed without chemicals or enzymes and are manufactured entirely from renewable sources, resulting in a low carbon footprint. Among other things, the company has seen promising test results for use in concrete, where the additive could improve performance in infrastructure projects, and in packaging applications, where it can be used to make 100% biosourced and fully recyclable translucent film, displacing traditional plastic film.

FPInnovations, an organization that specializes in the creation of solutions that accelerate the growth of the Canadian forest products sector, led the partnership that developed the extraction technology to produce cellulose filaments. Performance BioFilaments Inc., a joint venture established by Resolute and Mercer International Inc., is working to commercialize traditional applications for the product.

The new plant is expected to produce up to 21 metric tons of cellulose filaments per day and to create about thirty new jobs, in addition to the approximately 200 existing jobs at the Kénogami paper mill.

Resolute Forest Products is a leading producer of a diverse range of wood, pulp, tissue and paper products.