Paper Excellence curtails Catalyst paper mill indefinitely
October 7, 2022 By CFI Staff
Paper Excellence has announced the indefinite curtailment of its paper operations at the Catalyst Crofton facility starting in early December 2022.
The company cited the weakening paper markets in China, as well as substantial price increases for chemicals, energy and wood fibre used at Crofton as reasons for the shutdown.
“We expect to operate Crofton’s paper machines for 60 days following this announcement. We will be working closely with both unions as this decision affects about 80 Unifor employees and 70 PPWC employees. We recognize the hardship this will have on both our employees and the Cowichan Valley. We hope to minimize these impacts through union discussions that will consider secondments, utilization of earned time off and employment insurance,” the company said in a statement.
The mill’s pulp operations will continue production during the paper curtailment.
Paper Excellence will be reaching out to assist customers with this transition and will continue to supply them with production from its Port Alberni mill where possible.
In 2021, the company invested in repurposing its Port Alberni paper machines to manufacture food and packaging grades.
Paper Excellence is working with both provincial and federal governments while it conducts studies at the Crofton facility to consider accelerating its conversion into natural food and packaging grades.
Last month, the company curtailed production at the Crofton plant for two weeks beginning Sept. 10.
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