The pulp and paper industry has some inherent sustainability challenges. To address them, tissue manufacturers and converters are proactively identifying ways to lower fuel consumption and carbon emissions, incorporate alternative fiber sources, and reduce the use of plastics and adhesives.
All of these are steps in the right direction for each facility, and also for the greater good. The environmental concerns surrounding tissue production extend beyond the walls of production plants. As a result, market trends suggest the production, packaging, and distribution innovations tissue manufacturers and converters choose to pursue influence sustainable agriculture, water quality, deforestation, and other interconnected ecological issues.
A holistic approach to sustainability
Tissue manufacturers and converters must act locally, but think globally in terms of sustainability initiatives. Several key areas of opportunity have emerged for integration of a strategic, holistic approach to sustainability:
- Reliance on more sustainable and renewable paper raw materials and pulp sources, such as managed forests, bamboo, and other fiber alternatives
- Increasing recycled content of tissue and packaging materials
- Packaging innovations including compostable paper and bioplastic alternatives
- Clean manufacturing processes that protect water supplies and reduce CO2 emissions
- Solid rolls and the elimination of adhesives
- Smart, efficient equipment and machines that reduce energy consumption
Each opportunity presents unique complexities in producing environmentally friendly and operationally efficient tissue products. They also reveal the need for dynamic technologies that address the competing priorities, and a partnership with proven solutions providers such as Kӧrber.
Sustainability solutions in rewinding, adhesives, and packaging
Research and development continue into product and technology advancements that greatly reduce dependence on materials and processes that stress the environment. Körber understands the complexities of processing wood into tissue, as well as the complex needs of tissue manufacturers and converters. That’s why its continuous, customer-focused innovations in tissue technologies are helping lead the industry down a more efficient, cost-effective path toward a sustainable future:
Solid tissue rewinding
Körber’s patented SolidⓇ and Solid+Ⓡ rewinding technologies eliminate the use of a central cardboard core. Solid produces rolls wound with no cardboard core, and Solid+ is the first toilet roll to replace the traditional inner cardboard core with an extractable mini roll. The end result of both rewinding technologies is a tissue roll with no inner cardboard core, and no need for glue for core-making, pickup, or transfer.
Traditional tissue conversion processes are adhesive-dependent during ply bonding lamination, core winding, c/transfer, and tail sealing. Converters need the adhesives, yet their expense and environmental hazards present challenges.
Kӧrber developed three technologies to ensure proper adhesive handling and/or elimination throughout production: sustainable Aquabond water lamination technology replaces adhesives with water during ply bonding and lamination, Solid and Solid+ rewinders eliminate central cores and the related adhesive, and glue-free tail-sealing is available in the Kӧrber Tail Sealer Model 563 that uses mechanics instead of adhesive for sealing.
Bioplastics and paper-based substrates are replacing traditional plastics. A wise environmental move, but the materials could cause equipment jams and production delays.
In conjunction with partnering companies, Kӧrber developed 100% compostable BIO paper with Vinicotte OK compost certification, and 100% recyclable and biodegradable paper. These packaging materials guarantee total sustainability when run on Kӧrber Casmatic equipment as the machines have been enhanced with BIO Pack. As an add-on or a machine option, BIO Pack provides the technical modification necessary for Casmatic tissue packaging equipment to wrap packs with 100% eco-friendly material, with no quality issues or disruption on the line.
Across markets and industries, sustainability is a top priority. In short, protecting the environment is everyone’s responsibility. With Kӧrber innovations, tissue manufacturers and converters no longer put in a position of choosing between what’s better for the environment and what’s better for business. Kӧrber rewinding, adhesive, and packaging technologies help align sustainability, efficiency, and profitability goals.