Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, 11 June 2012 -- Fortress Paper Ltd. (TSX:FTP) has ramped up production of dissolving pulp at its Fortress specialty cellulose mill to an average of approximately 92% of final targeted capacity during the last 10 days and has averaged approximately 83% over the last four weeks.
The mill commenced production of dissolving pulp at the end of 2011, and has been steadily improving its production efficiency and technical capabilities. Following initial delays, we recently took scheduled periods of downtime to eliminate process constraints. These have proven successful and the ramp-up to full capacity continues to improve. The dissolving pulp being produced is meeting customer specifications and shipments to viscose customers located in China are increasing in volume.
"We are pleased with the ramp-up of dissolving pulp production at our Fortress specialty cellulose mill and the quality of the product," said Chad Wasilenkoff, chief executive officer of Fortress Paper. "With our continually increasing production of dissolving pulp as well as process optimization, we are well on our way to achieving management’s forecasted top quartile cost structure once our cogeneration facility is fully operational. We expect our dissolving pulp segment to provide a meaningful contribution to our financial results as the year progresses."
Fortress Paper operates internationally in three distinct business segments: dissolving pulp, specialty papers, and security paper products. The company operates its dissolving pulp business at the Fortress specialty cellulose mill in Canada, which is in the process of expanding into the renewable energy generation sector with the construction of a cogeneration facility. The company operates its specialty papers business at the Dresden mill in Germany, where it is a leading international producer of specialty nonwoven wallpaper base products. The company operates its security paper products business at the Landqart mill in Switzerland, where it produces banknote, passport, visa, and other brand protection and security papers, and at its Fortress optical facility in Canada, where it manufacturers optically variable thin film material.