2 12 ISSUE
METSÄ FIBRE CUSTOMER MAGAZINE
“Know your customer.” THEME · BOTNIA ECHOES FROM THE WORLD
A PROMISE IS A DELICATE THING, PAGE 6
A GREAT IMPROVEMENT IN DEFIBERING, PAGE 24
AN INNOVATIVE NEW PROCESS THAT SAVES COSTS AND ENERGY.
14 &24 POLYSULPHIDE DIGESTION: A brighter future for pulp In summer 2013, Joutseno mill (pictured) will introduce an innovative new digestion process. In a nutshell, it works by oxidising some of the sulphide sulphur into polysulphide, preventing hemicellulose from dissolving in the digester along with the lignin. This gives pulp with improved technical properties, leading to cost and energy savings for paper manufacturers. READ MORE ABOUT IT ON PAGES 14–15 AND 24–27, AND FIND OUT WHY POLYSULPHIDE DIGESTION IS THE PROCESS OF THE FUTURE!
A CULTURE OF CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT
“THE DESIRE TO CONTINUOUSLY IMPROVE IS CHARACTERISTIC OF OUR OPERATION.”
To ensure high product quality, all aspects of production must be first class. It’s a question of company culture: for Metsä Fibre, this culture is the product of customer-oriented procedures, strong employee know-how, a productive partner network, high levels of safety and the minimising of any environmental impacts. These, among other things, are our customer promise. As Ari Harmaala points out in this issue, our customers and their needs are at the very centre of our work. Every one working at Metsä Fibre sees this as the core of our business – in the end it is always about customer benefits. We develop the quality of our products through in-depth, confidential cooperation with our customers. We’re able to rapidly convey our customers’ wishes to our production organisation using our customer responsibility chain. We’ve also collaborated with customers on several highly productive joint projects. It’s only by working in this way that we’ve been able to develop our products to meet – and increasingly exceed – our customers’ requirements. To improve the quality management of our pulp, we’ve developed a continuous quality index to measure the homogeneity of the product’s quality and are commissioning this index on each factory. We’re confident that this will provide more and more exact and real-time information about the quality of our pulp. The desire to continuously improve is characteristic of our operation. This passion can be seen in our development work with new product, polysulphide as well as in Joutseno’s new gasification plant. In the summer of 2013, the world’s largest single-line softwood pulp mill will begin using the polysulphide digestion method. Metsä Fibre’s new product will save energy and improve the pulp’s paper-making properties. Modern pulp mills are major producers of renewable bioenergy. We think that this is the way of the future and we are looking forward to take the first steps. The principle of continuous improvement is based on our values: cooperation, reliability, innovation and responsible profitability. We want to be a measurably better partner for all our customers in all aspects of our operation. ISMO NOUSIAINEN SE N IO R VICE PRESIDE N T PRO DUCT IO N
[contents] ECHOES FRO M T HE WO RLD
6 MY VOICE
HE AR HE AR A BRIGHT E R FUT URE FO R PULP
E DITORIAL A CULT URE O F CO N T IN UOUS IMPROVE ME N T
ECHOES FROM THE WORLD PRO MISES – E ASY TO MAKE , HARD TO KE E P
TALKING ECHO JUST ADD PO LYSULPHIDE
M Y VOICE PO LYSULPHIDE PULP AT KIRKN IE MI PAPE R MILL
G RE E N SOUNDS GRE E N E N E RGY GOALS
COLUM N TOWARDS LIFE AS O N E PLAN E T
ECHO TECH A GRE AT IMPROVE ME N T IN DE BFIBE RIN G
M ARKE T REVIEW A N EW PAT H TO DEVE LO PME N T
ECHO M ONITOR
ECHO M ARK CMC – A RE MARKABLE CO MPOUN D
ECHO T ECH
24 ECHO MARK
Publisher: Metsä Fibre, Sales and Marketing. Editor-in-Chief: Saija Tuomikoski. Editorial Board: Ari Harmaala, Mikael Lagerblom, Ursula Lumme, Tom Nickull and Saija Tuomikoski.
English language editing: TenFour Communications. Translations: AAC Global Oy. Printed by: Erweko Oy.
Production: Otavamedia Customer Communication. Team: Maija Kajanto, Jaana Pakkala, Katri Sulin and Riina Walli.
Metsä Fibre Echo is published in English, Finnish, German and Chinese. All magazines are available at www.metsafibre.com
ISSN 1795–1089 (printed edition) ISSN 1795–1097 (online edition)
M ETS Ä FI B R E EC H O. I SSU E 2/ 20 12. M ETS Ä FI B R E, P.O. BOX 30, FI-02020 M ETS Ä , F I N LA N D. W W W. M ETSA FI B R E.COM
Cover: Carta Integra 170 g. Paper: Galerie Art Silk 130 g.
ECHOES FROM THE WORLD
ARI HARMAALA Ari Harmaala has been in charge of Metsä Fibres’ Sales and Marketing processes for about a year. Prior to that he spent 20 years in Asia selling papermaking machines at Metso, a leading mechanical engineering company.
ECHOES FROM THE WORLD
P ROM I SE – A DE L I CATE T H IN G Promises are easy to make but hard to
keep. A promise should never be made too lightly, no matter if you are promising to return a phone call or deliver on time to a multibillion euro customer. TEXT / LENA BARNER-RASMUSSEN, PHOTOS / TOMMI TUOMI & SHUTTERSTOCK
o make a customer promise that matters, you need to know where you currently stand. “Our customers buy fibre on a monthly basis, so consistency in quality is very important. Competent people and swift processes are also a part of the quality,” explains Ari Harmaala, Senior Vice President, Metsä Fibre Sales and Marketing. Metsä Fibre’s customer promise rests on five cornerstones: high quality, sustainability, logistic agility, technical knowhow and cost competitiveness. Technical know-how and cost competitiveness go hand in hand, as it is possible to substantially improve cost efficiency by doing things right. Metsä Fibre shares its fibre expertise with its customers. “We advise our customers how to get the most out of the fibre. For instance, by refining the fibres you can make substantial savings,” says Harmaala. Logistic agility – making sure that the fibre arrives at the right place at the right time – is also important. Nobody wants a huge pile of fibre in stock. Metsä
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Fibre is the first company in the industry to use RFID identification tags on their products, although the full benefits will be realized once everybody in the industry, including ports and logistic firms, join in using it. Finally there is sustainability. Customers increasingly want to make sure that they are buying fibre from one of the good guys. This means certifications and compliance with environmental regulations. And, as Harmaala points out, work safety. “This is one point that tends to get in the shadow. We make a point of tracking the frequency of accidents, we want to be the industry benchmark when it comes to work safety.” This all adds up to Metsä Fibre’s customer promise: Fibres of Success. At the very centre of it all is the customer and his or her needs. When Harmaala joined the company about a year ago he was tasked with rebuilding the customer management at Metsä Fibre. At the same time, the company name was changed from Metsä Botnia to Metsä Fibre.
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As Harmaala sank his teeth into improving Metsä Fibre’s customer management, he also wanted every member of staff to start thinking in a more customeroriented way. “Interactions with the customer is not just something for the sales people. Even the operator at the pulp mill should know where a particular bale is going. I wanted to transform the customers into real people for everybody. I think that enhances motivation for everybody because in the end, you are interested in people more than in products,” says Harmaala.
A promise that matters For making a customer promise that matters, you truly need to know to whom you are making that promise. “Customer needs is the starting point. When making a customer promise you see all too often that people tend to take their products as the starting point when it really is all about the customer. Start by asking yourself what is the user experience rather than what do we want to manufacture,” advises Catharina Stackelberg from Marketing Clinic. Just as with any promise in life that you intend to keep, a customer promise should never be made lightly. For a company the size of Metsä Fibre, the process of articulating a promise is a complex one. You need to know what you are promising and make sure you’ve got what it takes to deliver. If the promise is articulated too narrowly it will lack important attributes; too broadly, and it will be difficult to handle. In other words, it needs to be right on target. “It needs to be very clearly articulated and in the end it is about the benefits for the customers,” says Ari Harmaala. According to Catharina Stackelberg, there are three main factors in a winning customer promise: hygiene factors, rational benefits and emotional benefits. The so-called hygiene factors are sort of ‘must haves’ in order to be credible. They are the prerequisites for competing in a certain business. “A bank needs to be reliable no matter what, for instance,” she says. Rational benefits already deliver clear advantages for customers and separate you from the pack in a positive way. Emotional benefits are significant points of leverage with target customers and can propel a brand towards category leadership. “The bottom line is that it is all about how you want your customers to think and feel when they are doing
CATHARINA STACKELBERG Catharina Stackelberg is the founder and CEO of the marketing consultancy Marketing Clinic. She helps her clients articulate customer promises and build sustainable commercial success.
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“START BY ASKING YOURSELF ABOUT THE USER EXPERIENCE RATHER THAN ABOUT WHAT YOU WANT TO MANUFACTURE.”
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business with you. A customer promise consistently gives answer to the customers’ question: What’s in it for me,” says Stackelberg. There is a tendency to sell products in an aggressive way and think less about what customers really need. Especially in business-to-business marketing, there has to be true added value involved, and what is added value for one customer is not necessarily the same as for another. The key is to really know the party on the other side of the negotiation table. “You need to know which segment the customer belongs to and speak his business language. You have to know what the goals your customer is striving towards, and align your promise with those goals,” says Harmaala, as Stackelberg nods in agreement. Customers’ needs change over time and this might require transferring them to a different segment. That’s why a continuous dialogue is needed to make sure that your promise is up to date. “There are certain routines for making sure that we meet regularly with important customers,” says Harmaala. Stackelberg points out that the information gathered from these encounters is not the sole property of sales people. “All too often the sales people have all the information, and when they leave, the customers may leave with them. Companies need more pulling together on this point – the customer should have a relationship with the whole company and not just with the sales force.” At Metsä Fibre the sales people are the main point of contact for customers, but they belong to sales teams involving people from different parts of the company. “This way, we make sure that the information reaches everyone. But in the end you have to accept that people do business with each other, not companies.”
You should think through all the interaction points you have with your customers and figure out which are the most important, says Catharina Stackelberg.
Part of the core A customer promise is just empty words unless all employees back up the promise with their actions. “Today we talk a lot of about the customer experience. You should think through all the interaction points you have with your customers and figure out which are the most important. That way you’ll be able to figure out which encounters matter the most and you can make sure that these touch points are resonating with your customer promise,” says Stackelberg. Everybody in the company is a conveyor of trust, ultimately playing a role in keeping the customer promise.
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WHAT MAKES A SUCCESSFUL COMPANY AND BRAND, CATHARINA STACKELBERG? 1 There needs to be a common destination and mission. Everybody in the organisation needs to know the companyâ€™s five-year plan. You also need to be able to lead the customer experience so as to secure the five-year perspective. How will the agreed business destination be implemented in every customer interaction from now on? 2 Another success driver is being meaningfully different. What makes our organisation stand out in a meaningful way? 3 You need the guts to make choices and really make the necessary investments to back up your strategy. A common mistake is a tendency towards trying to keep things as they are. It is surprisingly difficult to choose not to do something, and then you risk doing a little of everything, which is seldom a winning strategy. 4 A brand is not a brand unless the customers have a clear picture of what the brand stands for. Strictly speaking it is not the company that decides if their brand is a brand, it is the customers. A brand should immediately bring the right attributes to the mind of the target group, like Volvo meaning safety and Apple products being fun and easy to use.
A CUSTOMER PROMISE IS JUST EMPTY WORDS UNLESS ALL EMPLOYEES BACK IT UP WITH THEIR ACTIONS.
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“It starts from the staff in the reception,” says Harmaala. Stackelberg agrees. “Everything communicates.” For this to work smoothly, it is important that the customer promise was not simply plucked out of the air. “The customer promise must resonate with the company DNA to be successfully embraced throughout the organisation,” says Stackelberg. Harmaala agrees. “The customer promise must resonate with the company’s values, mission and vision. The soul of the promise lies in the company values.” So before presenting the promise to customers, employees must take it fully to heart. “Our employees are the ones who take this promise forward. If they haven’t fully internalised the promise then it will remain an empty one. It is important that the whole staff is backing the promise, as it is only as strong as the weakest link,” says Harmaala. But what if you break your customer promise. Can it be fixed? “If you fail on one of your hygiene factors, like a bank failing on credibility, it’s hard to fix,” says Stackelberg. Failing on the emotional factors is not as fatal, but bad enough. “Regaining customers confidence is a long process,” says Harmaala.
Everybody in the company plays a role in keeping the customer promise, agree Stackelberg and Harmaala.
Regular dialogue How do you know that you’ve truly delivered on your promise? Catharina Stackelberg recommends regular customer surveys, if not monthly then at least once per quarter – but they won’t tell you everything. “As the surveys are undeniably quite technical, you need a regular dialogue with the customer as well.” Ultimately, you’ll see on that famous bottom line of the corporate balance sheet whether you’ve kept your promise or not. “The actions are reflected in the figures. Sustainable profit says it all. You won’t prevail in a business like this for decade after decade unless you deliver what you promise,” says Harmaala.
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METSÄ FIBRE’S CUSTOMER PROMISE: FIBRES OF SUCCESS
QUALITY FIBRES Botnia
“AT THE VERY CENTRE IS THE CUSTOMER AND HIS OR HER NEEDS.”
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ELEMENTAL TRANSFORMATION Some of the SULPHIDE SULPHUR (S 2 -) in the pulping liquor is changed into POLYSULPHIDE , i.e. elemental sulphur. This makes it possible to prevent the HEMICELLULOSE from dissolving along with the lignin.
THE PULP DIGESTING PROCESS… …is optimised to enable the use of new additives. The POLYSULPHIDE DIGESTION
will be introduced at the world’s largest softwood pulp production line in Joutseno in the summer of 2013. The method will see wood raw material used more efficiently in Metsä Fibre’s new softwood pulp product. The high HEMICELLULOSE content will strengthen fibre structure and play an important role in paper production. This new type of fibre will require less refining.
JUST ADD POLYSULPHIDE Metsä Fibre’s new polysulphide method will save energy and improve paper machine runnability. TEXT / PETJA PARTANEN, PHOTO / SHUTTERSTOCK
THE INVERSE VALUE OF DENSITY shows the paper material’s specific volume. The bulk of the pulp remains unchanged.
FIBRE LENGTH AND BRIGHTNESS THE POLYSULPHIDE
digestion process will not change the SOFTWOOD PULP’S basic properties.
- 10 TO 20% REFINING ENERGY CONSUMPTION
The new PULP FIBRE will require less refining before being transferred to the paper machine, with the total energy consumption of refining no more than 100 kWh per metric tonne of pulp. Each kWh saved equals monetary savings.
+ 5 TO 10% TENSILE STRENGTH, TENSILE STIFFNESS AND MODULUS OF ELASTICITY SOFTWOOD PULP provides paper with strength. The improved tensile strength and tensile stiffness of the pulp is exploitable either by improving end-product strength or reducing the amount of expensive softwood pulp in the paper.
+ 5 TO 10% INTERNAL BOND STRENGTH
Shows how well board layers, or the paper and its coating, are attached to one another. This is an important property in coated paper and board grades.
NOTE! The changes in cellulose properties are conservative estimates based on laboratory tests. Savings in refining energy will depend on the refining process used in papermaking.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE POLYSULPHIDE METHOD, SEE PAGE TA LKING ECHO
POLYSULPHIDE PULP brings bustle TO PAPER MANUFACTURING
Kirkniemi’s machines produce 2 000 tonnes of paper a day.
Sappi’s Kirkniemi paper mill and Metsä 5 500 KM
5 587 KM
Fibre are like family members. They trade pulp, exchange technical support and cooperate on some amazing development projects – the latest being Kirkniemi’s introduction of polysulphide pulp. TEXT / KATJA ALAJA, PHOTOS / KATRI LEHTOLA
PAPER PRODUCTION PER DAY AT SAPPI.
2 000 TONNES OF MAGAZINE AND CATALOGUE PAPER EVERY DAY.
DISTANCE FROM LONDON TO NEW YORK
190 TONNES, THE HEAVIEST WHALE EVER RECORDED.
pile of one-thousand-kilo softwood pulp bales sits waiting to be dispatched. Within 24 hours they will be winding their way through paper machines and a new set of bales will be waiting their turn. Pulp produced by Metsä Fibre is continuously flowing to Sappi’s paper mill in Kirkniemi, Lohja, Finland. The paper machines of the South African-owned mill produce 2 000 tonnes of magazine and catalogue paper every day. “If it was placed in one long line, it would be approximately seven metres wide and 5 500 kilometres long – enough paper to stretch all the way to north Africa,” says Martti Savelainen, Plant Manager at Sappi. The paper produced in Kirkniemi is used in wellknown magazines and catalogues around the world. “Our paper is used in Newsweek, National Geographic, Air France’s customer magazine, Elle, Vogue, the Finnish wine magazine Viini and many others,” explains Savelainen. As much as 94 per cent of Sappi’s production is exported, with most going to Germany, England, Poland, Australia, Russia and the United States. The Galerie
paper family consists of Lite, Brite, Fine and Fine Silk. But why are Sappi’s products so popular with customers? “That’s a good question,” says Savelainen, thinking for a moment. “Uniform quality and reliable delivery are the factors we’ve focused on. We have very few problems because we keep the machines in good working order.” Metsä Fibre supplies Sappi with softwood pulp and helps to improve their paper production efficiency. This relationship means Metsä Fibre plays its own role in Sappi’s delivery reliability. “We need the pulp quality to be as even as possible, with the different seasons not visible in the quality,” points out Savelainen. “Metsä Fibre is a reliable partner in this regard, and they always deliver the pulp on time.”
Like one big family In a light-coloured hall built in the 1990s, Galerie Queen, Kirkniemi’s third paper machine, is rumbling away. It is half a kilometre long and approximately 120 metres wide. The plant manager visits the hall as often as possible, waving to the employees in the control room. Savelainen may also run into Metsä Fibre’s technical customer service representative, who visits at least once a month to help fine-tune the paper production process. “The expert from Metsä Fibre talks with engineers and supervisors, as well as production and other personnel,” says Savelainen. “She finds out how much pulp has been used and how it has behaved on the test line, inspecting laboratory values and giving expert advice.” Tom Nickull, Key Account Manager for Sappi at Metsä Fibre, also visits the mill regularly, with meetings arranged at least a couple of times a year.
MORE PAPER, LOWER COSTS Metsä Fibre’s Joutseno softwood pulp mill will start cooking polysulphide next summer. Martti Savelainen, Plant Manager at Sappi’s Kirkniemi paper mill, is excited about the prospect: polysulphide pulp will, in the future, be used as much as possible in their paper manufacturing. “The basic idea is that polysulphide will allow us to reduce the amount of pulp needed for paper manufacturing,” says Savelainen. “We can save hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of euros every year. That is our carrot.”
The supercalender consists of alternating steel and fiber-covered rolls through which paper is passed to increase its density, smoothness and gloss.
“Polysulphide could save us millions of euros every year.”
Martti Savelainen, Plant Manager at Kirkniemi.
SAVING IS THE THEME OF THE DAY The new polysulphide pulp contains more hemicellulose, which improves the technical properties of paper, such as tensile stiffness and refinability. Less refining means lower energy consumption and lower raw material costs, with the customer still receiving a product with a similar or higher tensile stiffness as before. Polysulphide pulp is a unique product in Europe, with a similar pulp currently only available in North America. “New innovations are needed, because saving is the theme of the day,” points out Savelainen. “Paper consumption is decreasing in Europe.” Savelainen explains that Sappi and Metsä Fibre began cooperating in autumn 2012 to ensure that the shift to polysulphide pulp goes smoothly. One necessary change is to lower the energy consumption of refining. “Together we are planning how to start using the new pulp and ensuring our equipment is aligned correctly,” summarises Savelainen.
“I highly appreciate Metsä Fibre’s local mill know-how and technical expertise,” says Savelainen. “The people at the company know the paper manufacturing process and equipment, and how they work together with the pulp. They give great advice and help us to refine and use the pulp correctly.”
Efficient, sustainable production Matti Savelainen tears a piece of paper from a paper reel heading for the hall. “I would say that is 70 gram. Let’s see,” he says, and looks at the label. The former production engineer laughs. “I guess I lost my touch – it’s 65 gram!” In the background, a winder produces paper for three different customers. This high-quality paper has been produced as cost efficiently as possible. “We have cooperated closely for some ten years now,” explains Savelainen. “Metsä Fibre’s organisation understands our vision well – that Kirkniemi produces results safely, while taking customer needs into account. We try to conserve our expensive raw material, and there is no conflict between us here.” This attitude is visible in everything they do, including the latest development. Next summer, Sappi – a major customer of Metsä Fibre’s Joutseno mill – will start using new polysulphide pulp in paper production on two paper machines. The objective is clear: more high-quality paper produced at even lower costs.
TEXT / FRAN WEAVER, PHOTOS / METSÄ GROUP & SHUTTERSTOCK
ENERGY SELF SUFFICIENCY LEVEL 150%
Metsä Fibre is finding new ways to effectively utilise renewable biomass – generating green bioenergy for both the company’s own production processes and for wider use. odern pulp mills are major producers of renewable bioenergy. About half of the biomass in the wood brought into mills is dissolved during the pulp-making process. The resulting black liquor can be burnt to generate energy for the mill and to sell as surplus bioenergy. Bark and other tree parts that are unsuitable for pulping can also be used to produce bioenergy. “At Metsä Fibre we have an overall energy selfsufficiency level in terms of electricity of about 150 per cent, which means we are a major supplier of green energy to Finland’s national grid,” explains Kaija Pehu-Lehtonen, Senior Vice President, Business Development. A new landmark in Metsä Fibre’s increasing use of bioenergy was reached during 2012 with the completion of a 48-megawatt gasification plant at Joutseno mill. Bark stripped from the mill’s incoming wood is first dried using surplus heat from the pulp-making process, and then converted into biogas for firing the pulp mill’s lime kiln. “After final adjustments the gasification plant is ready to roll,” says Pehu-Lehtonen. “Joutseno’s lime kiln can now be heated using biogas produced on
site, instead of natural gas. This shift is a significant part of our wider efforts to replace fossil fuels.” The new facility will further improve the overall energy efficiency of the mill, and reduce Joutseno’s carbon dioxide emissions by about 60,000 tonnes a year. “It also means that during normal operations Joutseno will be completely carbon neutral,” adds Pehu-Lehtonen. Like Metsä Fibre’s other mills, Joutseno is already more than self-sufficient in terms of net electricity generation and consumption. The mill produces enough surplus electricity to meet the needs of 50,000 homes.
Wider potential for biogas Metsä Fibre is already considering how a similar facility could be set up at Kemi mill, where the lime kiln is currently oil-fired. “We’re currently study-
48-MEGAWATT GASIFICATION PLANT AT JOUTSENO MILL
“Joutseno's new gasification plant is ready to roll.” BARK
ing various technical options for Kemi, after learning a lot from our achievements at Joutseno,” says Pehu-Lehtonen. Back at Joutseno, Metsä Fibre is also assessing prospects for a larger, 200-megawatt biorefinery that would convert bark and forest chips into synthetic biogas. With a methane content of 95 per cent, this biogas would closely resemble the natural gas currently imported from Russia through a network of pipelines across southern Finland. Pehu-Lehtonen explains that wood-based biogas could be fed into this network from
Joutseno mill in collaboration with Finnish energy company Gasum. “We’ve completed the conceptual study showing that such a biorefinery could be technically integrated into the mill. The next phase will involve further feasibility studies with our partners,” she says.
Renewable biomass Another partner in this scheme is the Helsinkibased power company Helsingin Energia, which is looking to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by using more renewable energy. Biogas produced from wood could be piped to Hel-
sinki through existing pipelines to heat water for the city’s district heating network in existing gas-fired power plants, reducing the need for new investments. Another advantage is that the scheme would not require the transportation and storage of bulky biomass in urban areas. “We’re always keen to learn how to make the most of the renewable biomass available through our mills’ supply chains,” says PehuLehtonen. “This makes the idea of synthesising methane from wood biomass at Joutseno mill and piping it to Helsinki a very interesting concept.”
METSÄ GROUP'S TARGET FOR CO2 EMISSIONS
GREEN ENERGY GOALS
across Metsä Group
etsä Fibre’s increasing use of wood-based bioenergy is part of a wider effort to utilise renewable energy sources throughout Metsä Group. “A strong focus on biomass is logical for a forest industry company. Biomass accounts for about 80 per cent of our total fuel use today – this is already a very high figure, and we’re striving to exploit all economically viable opportunities to increase it,” explains Ilkka Latvala, Senior Vice President, Energy, Metsä Group. “Our group-wide target is that by 2020 our carbon dioxide emissions will be 30 per cent lower per product tonne than in the benchmark year 2009,” says Latvala. “We aim to achieve this by further replacing fossil fuels with bioenergy and by enhancing the overall energy efficiency of our production processes by 10 per cent over the same period. This will be achieved through operational and technical improvements.” Progress towards these targets is tracked across the group. Metsä Group is increasingly providing customers with carbon footprint calculations for specific products. Such efforts are welcomed by customers keen to monitor the sustainability of their suppliers. Latvala emphasises that the recent major investments in bioenergy production made both by Metsä Fibre and other Metsä Group mills represent significant steps towards these targets. “We’re always seeking value-adding partnerships with other energy users or suppliers to find new ways to reduce costs and replace fossil fuels through the use of sustainable bioenergy. For instance, many of our mills also supply surplus heat for district heating schemes in local communities.”
OF 2009 LEVELS
“A strong focus on biomass is logical for a forest industry company.”
BIOMASS ACCOUNTS FOR ABOUT 80% OF OUR TOTAL FUEL USE TODAY
LIISA ROHWEDER SECRETARY GENERAL, WWF FINLAND
TOWARDS LIFE AS ONE PLANET E
PHOTO / MIINA POIKOLAINEN
The Living Planet Report published by WWF this year makes for grim reading: we are living beyond our means. At present we Finns consume natural resources and energy at three times the biocapacity of our planet. On a global level, the human ecological footprint is 1.5 times the world’s biocapacity. If we carry on like this, by 2030 we will need two planet Earths to meet our demand. At the same time, our increasing consumption places additional stress on the biodiversity of the natural environment, which has declined by 30 per cent since 1970. Biodiversity is crucial for sustaining people’s wellbeing and livelihoods. Living organisms – plants, animals and microorganisms – form complex, interconnected webs of ecosystems and habitats, which in turn supply a myriad of ecosystem services upon which all life depends. Understanding how biodiversity, ecosystem services and humans interact is vital to safeguarding the future security, health and wellbeing of human societies.
stopping the decline of biodiversity. This requires that we accept this fundamental reality as the basis for our economy, business models and lifestyles: the natural capital of planet Earth – biodiversity, ecosystems and ecosystem services – is limited. Therefore it is vital that natural resources are used, maintained, managed and distributed according to the ecological constraints of our planet. Alongside safeguarding and renewing the natural capital, more sustainable alternatives must be introduced to production and logistics chains. Reorganising money flows and managing a fairer distribution of natural resources will support such processes. Many of us think that the world can only be changed on the level of states, organisations, corporations and institutions. It is my personal view that the world will change only if a sufficient number of people take action in support of this change. It is, in the end, people who make decisions and choices in corporations, and thereby have an impact on the wellbeing of the entire planet. Knowledge and expertise take us only so far. We also need the ability to communicate, cooperate and come up with feasible solutions. By joining forces, and with a common will and courage, we can stop living on resources borrowed from future generations and bring about a change towards a way of life that demands only the capacity of the one planet Earth we have.
HOW CAN WE RESPOND TO THE CHALLENGE? SEE PAGE 32
We already have ways to secure a sufficient supply of food, water, energy and various raw materials for the estimated population of nine billion in 2050, while preserving ecosystem services and
“BIODIVERSITY IS CRUCIAL FOR SUSTAINING PEOPLE’S WELLBEING AND LIVELIHOODS.”
“THE POLYSULPHIDE DIGESTION METHOD IMPROVES THE TENSILE STRENGTH AND BONDING PROPERTIES OF THE FIBRES.”
A G R E AT IMPROVEMENT I N DE F I B E R I N G PAGE 24
In the summer of 2013, the world’s largest the polysulphide digestion method. Metsä
single-line softwood pulp mill will begin using Fibre’s new product will save energy and improve the pulp’s paper-making properties. TEXT / PETJA PARTANEN, PHOTOS / METSÄ GROUP
order to benefit the environment and make the most of scarce raw material, in summer 2013 the Joutseno mill will take a giant leap forward with the introduction of a brand new cooking process. The improved technical properties of the cellulose will also provide cost savings for paper manufacturers. “The new production method needs less wood per tonne of end product,” explains Henrik Söderström, Vice President, Mill Manager at Joutseno mill. “The polysulphide digestion method improves the tensile strength and bonding properties of the fibres produced, while the process itself requires less refining energy,” points out Söderström. “Metsä Fibre’s new pulp product will offer unprecedented potential for our customers,” adds Tom Nickull, Key Accounts & Vice President, Technical Customer Service at Metsä Fibre. “This is a huge leap forward!” says an excited Kari Kovasin, D.Sc. (Tech.), one of the developers of Joutseno’s new cooking process. In his opinion, the polysulphide digestion method is a technical improvement similar to when the bleach-
ing process was completely changed in the beginning of 1990s and chlorine chemicals were removed from the pulp bleaching process.
Significant energy savings The new digestion method will deliver immediate cost savings for all Joutseno pulp buyers. Before transfer to the paper machine, pulp must be refined. The refining process is used to adjust the paper-making pulp properties as desired. “The new pulp composition will reduce the need for refining and therefore the amount of electricity used,” says Nickull. As a result of the new cooking process, the pulp strength properties, such as tensile strength, tensile stiffness and internal bond strength, will improve by about 5–10 per cent. Improved strength properties can be of benefit in many different ways, explains Nickull. “The improved tensile strength is exploitable either by improving the end-product tensile strength or replacing the softwood pulp with a cheaper raw material, while keeping the end-product properties unchanged.” This new type of softwood pulp may provide tis-
sue manufacturers with a suitable method for improving the softness of their products. Metsä Fibre aims to cut down papermaking costs and improve end-product quality in cooperation with the users of its products. “It is interesting to try to find added value together with our customers,” concludes Nickull.
It’s finally time for production The polysulphide digestion method is not a new innovation. It has been discussed in scientific documents since the 1960s, with some mills even having tested the method. But this is no pilot project for Joutseno, home to the world’s largest softwood pulp production line. “Our 15.5 million euro investment in the method covers all production at the mill. The investment will add value for our customer and benefit our own production economies,” states Söderström. Compared to previous experiments, it was not enough for Joutseno to just use additives. Instead, the entire cooking process has been redesigned to make the most of the polysulphide addition. Söderström is, of course, cautious about revealing details about the development work carried out by Kari Kovasin and his colleagues. The polysulphide production itself is based on proven technology. Sulphide sulphur will be oxidised to elemental sulphur in a commercial MOXY process supplied by Andritz. The equipment construction work began in the autumn of 2012. “Our process specialists have excelled at building a fully functional production process based on this method,” says Nickull proudly. Customer process changes needed too According to Nickull, Metsä Fibre will offer a totally new pulp product in 2013. In order for customers to make the most of this, they should adjust their production process in line with the new raw material properties and its increased hemicellulose content. “The common feature for all customer groups is that the process will need less refining energy – how much less
will depend on the product and process. If the process isn’t adjusted, customers will find that the pulp quality is lower due to excessive refining. The paper web will be too compact and water won’t be removed,” points out Nickull. Nickull explains that the company intends to make a startup plan for the new product together with customers. After this, he promises to support customers when they want to make the most of related business benefits. “When the machine is running with the new stock, we can think together whether, for example, the proportion of expensive softwood pulp could be reduced,” he explains.
New quality criteria The new type of fibre also requires the use of new KPIs for quality. Pulp quality has traditionally been estimated with a combination of two factors: tensile strength and tearing resistance. The polysulphide digestion process will improve the tensile strength of the pulp but may deteriorate its tearing resistance. “The tearing resistance is of great significance in paper, but it is not the same as the tearing resistance of pulp,” Nickull points out. “Our starting point is that paper machine runnability will play a greater role, for instance in the production of printing paper,” reflects Kovasin. “We have found that properties such as improved bonding and tensile strength that can be achieved with EQUIPMENT CONSTRUCTION WORK BEGAN IN AUTUMN 2012.
MORE FIBRES, BETTER QUALITY CAN A PROCESS CHANGE NOT ONLY IMPROVE CELLULOSE YIELD, BUT ALSO ENHANCE THE QUALITY OF THE CELLULOSE FIBRE? THE DIGESTER AT JOUTSENO MILL HOLDS THE ANSWER.
The pulp digesting process is used to separate fibres by dissolving the lignin that bonds them together. The digester reaches temperatures of 170°C, causing a chemical reaction between the sodium and the sulphur and, along with the lignin, dissolving some of the hemicellulose that strengthens the fibre cell walls. Instead of ending up in the pulp, this portion ends up in the soda recovery boiler for burning. Beginning in summer 2013, some of the sulphide sulphur from Joutseno’s digester will be oxidised into elemental sulphur, which will prevent the hemicellulose from dissolving with the lignin. This process is known as polysulphide digestion. “Thanks to this new chemical cooking process, a larger quantity of hemicellulose will be left in the pulp,” says Kari Kovasin, one of the developers of the new process. This will also change the properties of the product itself, improving its paper-making qualities. The increased hemicellulose content will improve the tensile strength of the pulp fibres and facilitate refining.
WOOD, AN INCREASINGLY SCARCE RAW MATERIAL, WILL BE USED MORE EFFICIENTLY THAN EVER AND PRODUCTION QUALITY WILL IMPROVE.
polysulphide will be better indicators of paper machine runnability than tearing resistance,” says Söderström.
A busy summer in 2013 The startup of the new polysulphide digestion process next summer will somewhat increase the uniqueness of the Joutseno pulp mill, which recently became carbon dioxide neutral. Wood, an increasingly scarce raw material, will be used more efficiently than ever and production quality will improve. “Our goal is to make our company the most desirable pulp supplier for customers. The new method certainly supports this idea,” says Söderström with excitement. Nickull expects next summer to be very busy. In addition to making trial run plans together with customers, personnel will soon start to prepare a new pulp manual. “We want to be present in customer mills when the trial run begins. Consequently, next summer’s holiday plans for technical customer service personnel will require some special arrangements.”
MARKET REVIEW China’s ambassador to Finland, Huang Xing, visiting Metsä Fibre in September.
A NEW PATH TO DEVELOPMENT PAGE 28
With China buying more and more market pulp, the fibre industry faces two burning questions as it plans its investments. When will Chinese demand peak, and where? His Excellency Huang Xing, China’s ambassador to Finland, says his country’s pulp imports will continue to grow for years to come.
TEXT / PAT HUMPHREYS, PHOTOS / TEEMU KUUSIMURTO, JERE HIETALA & SHUTTERSTOCK
hina bought an estimated 23 per cent of world market pulp in 2011, up from 15 per cent in 2005. “Our demand for paper and board is certain to continue rising,” says ambassador Huang Xing. “Unlike agriculture, where we want to feed ourselves, we will continue to depend to a certain extent on fibre imports.”
Planning for future growth The national forestation programme has been “quite successful” and is to be accelerated. “We are trying to achieve forest coverage of 23 per cent by 2020. It is a big challenge because natural conditions are quite harsh in many areas.” Even that will not be enough to keep up with demand for paper products. “As 1.35 billion people get richer, the rise in consumption is enormous. Pulp imports will grow for many more years.” But the ambassador warns against extrapolating future Chinese demand from Western figures. “At 68 kg per head, our consumption of paper and board is already above the world average. It will definitely
grow but it will never reach the peak levels of North America and some European countries.” “If Chinese consumption were to rise to 300 kilos per capita, it would be a disaster for the world and its forests. We need to find a new path to development that is sustainable for the globe.” Western development has been led by three highs, Huang Xing says: high wages, high consumption and high welfare. “Of course our people want these too, but we need to be guided by three new highs – high efficiencies in energy, resource utilisation and transport.” These new highs are why China is rationalising its own pulping industry. Since the mid-1990s, thousands of small mills have been closed. The government indicated last year that the pace of consolidation would be stepped up.
New capacity, new efficiencies One effect of rationalisation will be a steady fall in the amount of non-wood pulp. “But one shouldn’t conclude that fibre imports will rise correspondingly.
“One of the reasons why we have developed so fast is that we learn from everyone.”
Alongside the closures, China is enlarging its modern pulping capacity, developing a recycling economy and curbing growth of paper demand.” It has a strategy for holding down paper use. “We’re developing information and communications technology. This year Huawei overtook Ericsson as the world’s largest producer of telecom equipment. Telecommunications will bring efficiency to our economy, to government administration and to office work.” Although ICT first took off in the West, it would be a mistake to assume that China’s future economy will mirror the Western model. “One of the reasons that we have developed so fast is that we learn from everyone, and from their failures as well as their successes. Take transport systems. Sixty per cent of the world’s high-speed rail network is in China.” “We’re using rail, and not only to replace road transport. For journeys up to 1 000 km, rail is better than aviation. Planes are even more wasteful than cars.”
Lessons from China From 2001–2005, Huang Xing was Director General of the China Science and Technology Exchange Center, and it shows. What else can his country teach Western businesses? “We have a very fast-moving economy. Europeans aren’t as efficient and responsive to customers as they could be. Americans are less rigid. But of course the Nordic countries are quite pragmatic…”
CHINA AND FIBRE
Metsä Fibre’s Ari Harmaala (left) and Ilkka Hämälä (right) warmly welcomed His Excellency Huang Xing to Metsä Fibre’s headquarters in September.
In papermaking, China has come full circle. The oldest pieces of paper in existence are hemp wrappings, excavated from the tomb of Chinese emperor Wu, who died in 87 BCE. After papermaking spread to the West in the 13th century, Europeans developed industrial production, transforming a luxury into a commodity. Now China is a papermaking giant once more. By 2010, Chinese production of paper and paperboard had reached 97 million metric tons, 22 per cent more than the next-ranked country, the United States. Finland and Sweden are minnows in this table, producing only an eighth as much. Chinese paper consumption has been rising even faster than production. Its
demand for tissue is particularly strong. Total paper consumption overtook North America’s in 2009, although consumption per capita is only about a fifth. Paper is one of China’s few industrial sectors that have a trade deficit. The pulp trade gap is even greater, because of the speed at which paper demand has grown and the shortage of suitable wood in China. About 60 per cent of the pulp China uses is recycled fibre, a quarter is virgin wood fibre and the rest is non-wood pulp. Less than half of this fibre is produced domestically. The outlook for foreign pulp appears good. Despite China’s own great investment in pulp mills, the shortage of local wood is expected to continue to limit growth of domestic production.
A FOCUS ON SUSTAINABILITY full capacity, Metsä Fibre mills use about 12.5 million cubic metres of wood per year for pulp production. The wood is purchased and delivered to our mills by Metsä Group, a cooperative owned by more than 130,000 private Finnish forest owners. Wood is a renewable raw material and Finnish wood reserves grow continuously. Finnish forests currently grow at a rate of almost 100 million cubic metres a year, while annual drain, natural mortality included, is some 70 million cubic metres. Of this amount, around 55 million cubic metres a year are used as raw material in the industry. All our actions aim to safeguard the biodiversity of forests and the conservation of rare natural habitats and endangered species. The most valuable forest areas and natural sites are protected from forestry use by various conservation measures. Our goal is to leave forests to the next generation in a better condition than they were when we received them. All the wood used by Metsä Fibre comes from sustainably managed forests. Since our main raw material is supplied by our own group, we always know the origin of our wood in detail. We naturally prefer to use certified wood. Metsä Group is a strong pioneer in forest certi-
Also in terms of sustainability, Metsä Fibre is one of the top international companies in our industry. We verify and audit the origin of all our wood to ensure forest diversity and growth now and in the future.
fication: more than 80 per cent of the wood used by its production facilities comes from certified forests. To put this figure into context, less than 10 per cent of the world’s forests are certified. In autumn 2012, Metsä Group was awarded an FSC group certificate. It covers the forests owned by the group – almost 35,000 hectares in total. A PEFC certificate has already been granted for these forests. The purpose of the FSC project was to test the applicability of the new standard to Finnish forestry. Contractual customers of Metsä Group’s parent company Metsäliitto Cooperative can also
join the FSC group certificate. However, FSC certification is not expected to gain much ground in Finland in the next few years. Most of the wood purchased by Metsä Group comes from Finnish private forest owners – some 920,000 people in total, most of whom have already chosen PEFC certification for their forests. In addition to forest owner-specific certifications, both PEFC and FSC can offer group certification, which keeps costs reasonable even if certified holdings are small. Metsä Group considers both the PEFC and FSC schemes equally sound guarantees of a sustainable chain of custody.
NEW BOTNIA PRODUCT NAMES NOW ON PULP UNITS Metsä Fibre is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of softwood pulp, and its Botnia brand is well known in the pulp sector. The brand promises the highest quality pulps with services and competence to support our customers’ competitiveness. In addition to responsibly produced pulp, the Botnia brand also includes technical and logistical services related to the use and development of fibre.
The Botnia product family, whose product names were all harmonised in February 2012, comprises Botnia Nordic Pine (long fibre softwood pulp), Botnia Nordic Birch (short fibre pulp), Botnia Nordic Strong (strong reinforcement pulp), and Botnia High Yield (BCTMP pulp). Since October, the new product names can now be seen on pulp units.
RELEASE YOUR CREATIVITY Metsä Fibre’s Innovation Forum was launched in February to gather ideas and improvement suggestions from employees across the business. “The Innovation Forum has started well and found its place in the daily work of inventive Metsä Fibre employees. All sorts of exciting ideas have come in,” says Ursula Lumme, Vice President, Product Development at Metsä Fibre. The forum’s purpose is to harness the staff ’s creativity with a transparent process that anyone can be part of. Development suggestions can be on anything from products and services to company procedures. Besides the opportunity to suggest new ideas, the forum also gives employees the chance to vote on, comment on and develop other people’s ideas. The Challenge section presents
urgent cases that require immediate inspiration. “Some of the ideas have been about developing production processes. The challenges of usability and tall oil have inspired people to generate ideas. On the other hand, lots of suggestions have been made about sales, customer services and products,” explains Lumme. “Catalyzers” have been selected to push innovation activities forward. They evaluate plans and expedite them. With their help, more and more suggestions can be refined into first-class ideas. “The biggest challenge is to activate more Metsä Fibre employees to actively participate using the Innovation Forum. In practice, this means developing it into a tool that is seen as a natural part of the daily development work.”
IMPROVED ONLINE SERVICE The Botnia Customer Extranet has been upgraded: Botnia Fibre Online is now available for Metsä Fibre customers. Our goal was to create a user-friendly service with the content clearly organised and displayed. Delivery-related quantity and quality reports can be easily found from the navigation, as well as accurate, up-to-date information on our products, services and sustainable development activities, and contact information for the customer responsibility chain. We want to continue to improve our online service, so please get in touch if you have any feedback or development ideas!
in a tube TEXT / TAINA VUOKKO, PHOTO / ARI HEINONEN
n the bathroom you might come across it while cleaning your teeth in the morning. In the kitchen you might find its name printed on the side of your cereal box. It wouldn’t be unusual if the bread you ate for breakfast also contained it. Carboxymethyl cellulose or CMC might not sound familiar, but most of us consume it every day. “CMC is used, for example, in toothpastes. It keeps the paste solid, so that it doesn’t run off the toothbrush. At the same time, it transforms the paste so that it slides comfortably in your mouth,” explains Jaana Ahtikari, Sales and Marketing Director at CP Kelco, the world’s largest manufacturer of carboxymethyl cellulose. This remarkable compound has hundreds
of different uses, spanning everything from the food industry to oil drilling. And new ones are being developed all the time. Approximately 230,000 tons of carboxymethyl cellulose are sold globally every year. CP Kelco’s factory at Äänekoski in central Finland is home to a production line that manufactures CMC specifically for use in the food industry, in compliance with the industry’s strict standards. “CMC is also used in food packaging,” says Ahtikari. “Production on these dedicated lines follows the applicable standards for food packaging. The paper industry also uses the compound in a wide range of different applications.”
PAPER INDUSTRY CMC
“You might not have heard of CMC, but you probably consume it every day.”
Published on Jan 22, 2013