ATLANTA and PENNINGTON, Ala. (News release) -- Georgia-Pacific announced that its Naheola, Alabama, mill has been selected as the location for a new tissue machine and roll storage building to support the company's consumer (retail) bath tissue business. The investment will total more than $120 million.
The new tissue machine will use modern Crescent former technology, replacing two older machines but increasing capacity at the mill. The new machine will support new bath tissue converting lines that are currently being started up at Naheola. These latest investments continue Georgia-Pacific's modernization of the Naheola mill, which includes ongoing construction of a new biomass boiler and woodyard. These modernization projects position the mill and the overall business to be competitive in the market. Employment is not expected to increase because of this investment.
Engineering and related work has begun, and startup of the new machine is scheduled for 2020. An average of 200 construction and contract-related workers are expected to be onsite at the mill every day during the project, with a potential peak of 400 contract workers per day at the height of construction.
"This is one of many investments we are making at our operations across the State of Alabama, and it highlights the long history and great relationships we have in the state and in the communities where we operate," said Christian Fischer, CEO and president of Georgia-Pacific.
In the past five years, capital investment at the Naheola mill has totaled more than $500 million, and Georgia-Pacific's statewide investments have totaled approximately $1.6 billion.
"This is a great day to celebrate for our employees, the Naheola mill community and most importantly for our current and future customers," said Kathy Walters, Group President - Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products Group. "All of these stakeholders benefit from these investments to make the Naheola mill a modern and competitive operation."
The Naheola mill currently employs more than 900 people. The mill produces retail bath tissue and paper towels used by consumers across the county, and also makes bleached paperboard which is sold on the market and also is used to make Georgia-Pacific's Dixie plates, cups and bowls.
Across Alabama, Georgia-Pacific operates eight facilities, employs more than 2,600 employees directly, pays more than $204 million in direct wages and benefits and creates more than 9,300 jobs indirectly in the state.