Pratt Industries plans new recycled containerboard mill

17 November 2017

New recycled containerboard capacities are emerging everywhere. Pratt Industries has decided to build a new mill in the state of Ohio which is to add 360.000 tpy of corrugated case material capacity to the market.

Pratt Industries Inc, one of the major US recycling, paper and corrugated packaging companies and affiliate of the family owned Australian firm Visy Industries, has plans to expand its US operations. A new recycled corrugated case material mill - the fifth of its kind since the foundation of Pratt Industries in 1985 - is in the pipeline. The new Pratt Paper mill is to be built in the town of Wapakoneta in the state of Ohio and have a capacity of 360,000 metric tpy (400,000 short t) of corrugated medium and linerboard made out of recycled fibre.

The group put the investment involved at $275m. The project is to be financed in large part through a $210m tax-exempt municipal revenue bond to be issued by the Ohio Air Quality Development Authority. The proceeds will be handed over to Pratt Paper (OH) LLC in the form of a loan and funds will be used by the borrower to finance the project, according the provisional bond prospectus available to EUWID. Pratt Industries will provide the other $65m from equity.

The new mill in Wapakoneta is to be built on a piece of land 24 ha in size. Construction work is set to get under way next March, with the new paper machine possibly ready to start operating in the fourth quarter of 2019. In project documentation, Pratt Industries discloses that Valmet will supply the paper machine, which will have a wire width of 6.24 m (5,79 m web width at reel) and a maximum operating speed of 1,100 m/min. The facility is expected to produce some 180.000 sh.t. in its first year of operation.

Pratt Industries put the new facility's demand for recovered paper at the equivalent of 422,000 metric t (465,000 sh. t), including 272,000 metric t (300,000 sh.t) of mixed paper and 150,000 metric tonnes (165,000 short tonnes) of old corrugated containers (OCC). Pratt Industries plans to meet all of its raw material needs through its corrugating and converting division Pratt Corrugated Holdings (PCH), which currently manufactures and sells approximately $2.3bn and 1.32 metr.t (1.48 million sh.t) of corrugated sheet and boxes and other specialty packaging. PCH is to purchase 90% of Pratt Paper's new recycled containerboard capacity in Ohio, too. The other 10% would be sold to third parties.