Metsä Board launches a state-of-the-art Excellence Centre to accelerate paperboard and packaging innovation

Metsä Board launches a state-of-the-art Excellence Centre to accelerate paperboard and packaging innovation

September 15, 2020
Press Release: Metsä Board

Growing consumption and demand for more sustainable packaging is boosting the need for new innovations

To develop solutions for packaging today and into the future, Metsä Board, part of Metsä Group, has started up operations in its new Excellence Centre at the unique bioeconomy site in Äänekoski, Finland.

The center, with its cutting-edge technology for R&D, packaging design and paperboard and packaging performance, aims to accelerate material and packaging innovation and provide a collaboration platform for customers and technology partners globally.

“As the amount of packaging continues to grow, new, sustainable solutions are needed to replace fossil-based materials and ensure circularity,” commented Mika Joukio, CEO of Metsä Board. “The Excellence Centre concept enables paperboard and packaging solutions that look at the entire value chain, and not just at its separate parts. With the material knowhow, competence and tools now available, we can optimize performance throughout the packaging life-cycle.”

The Excellence Centre, which covers a total of 1,500m2, includes R&D facilities, a packaging design studio, a customer feedback center and a state-of-the art laboratory providing more than 100 different measurement methods and analytics. The center also features a virtual store and a computer-aided engineering (CAE) tool to allow sophisticated simulation and analysis of packaging performance.

Metsä Board’s Excellence Centre brings together Metsä Board’s own competencies and deep expertise in fiber-based solutions with that of various experts and partners, such as material suppliers, technology providers, start-up companies, universities and research companies. Virtual collaboration workshops have also been developed to enable joint development and co-creation if physical meetings are not possible.

“Renewable and recyclable fresh fiber paperboard can be utilized for packaging in many ways,” added Joukio. “Fiber-based packaging has a lot to offer, and together with our partners and the new Excellence Centre, we are able to explore the possibilities even more comprehensively. I am excited about the opportunities this will bring for today and the future.”

Äänekoski’s unique bioeconomy ecosystem includes a next-generation bioproduct mill, a paperboard mill, plywood mill, the Pro Nemus visitor center and a textile fiber demo plant.

Early Bird Registration is now open for the Plastic Free World Virtual Summit, which takes place live and on-demand on 9-10 November 2020. A two-day pass is available at the specially reduced rate of €499 (saving €200). Discounts are available for group bookings. Click here to secure your virtual seat

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