Van Houtum enters into joint venture with Noble Environmental Technologies to establish new production line at its Swalmen tissue paper mill in the Netherlands
(Swalmen, The Netherlands, Nov. 9, 2016) A new production line at our paper mill in Swalmen where new products will be made in the future. That is the goal of the joint venture we have entered into with Noble Environmental Technologies. Noble has developed a unique, clean technology for producing ECOR panels. Van Houtum’s managing director Bas Gehlen: “If everything goes as planned, we will start to manufacture a completely new range of different products alongside our innovative washroom solutions. This is unique in our history.”
The new production options will be researched in a pilot plant at our paper mill during the coming period. We have signed a binding joint-venture contract with Noble Environmental Technologies. Bas Gehlen: “This cooperation offers new perspectives for our future. We want to install a new production line as soon as possible, based on the results of the pilot plant. It will be an exciting time. We have high expectations and know what the initial start-up involves, but have no firm forecasts at the moment.”
Eric Logtens, Corporate Director Circular Economy at Noble: “Van Houtum is the ideal partner and expert for our new company. They have proved that they have the right DNA and sharpness of vision when it comes to sustainability. This cooperation between our companies is unique in the world. I expect strong synergy effects from our joint activities.”
Noble Environmental Technologies has developed a technology for producing a 100% recycled and 100% bio-based panel material (ECOR) from various cellulose waste flows without having to add chemicals or any other kind of harmful substance. A wide range of products can be made from ECOR panels for construction-related and interior design applications. For example, for general construction, the furniture industry, manufacturers of signs and displays, the packaging industry and consumer products.
Eric Logtens: “During the past 10 years we have focused almost entirely on developing this technology. That technology is now ready to be proven in a production environment. That requires the pilot plant in Swalmen, which will be our base for serving the markets in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Many potential customers, including multinationals and central governments, are aware of this development and eagerly anticipating the development of their own ECOR ‘composites’.”
Bas Gehlen: “Our companies have adopted the same strategy; we use waste flows for our production. At the pilot plant, our joint expertise will focus on developing our concepts to the point where we can offer new market applications. We have entered into an equal partnership in which we will create a platform for innovations of all kinds. Hopefully, this will be the start of a wide range of new circular concepts which will appeal to many different types of customer and use many different types of material flows.” (Source: press release)
Cover Image: Inside Van Houtum Swalmen tissue paper mill in the Netherlands (courtesy Van Houtum)