Santa Giustina paper mill, whic celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2019, is one of the seven production plants of the RDM Group.
credit by Paola Tisi for Industria della Carta
Santa Giustina paper mill, whic celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2019, is one of the seven production plants of the RDM Group. Santa Giustina plays a foundamental role inside the group for the amount of cardboard produced per year.
Its development and improvement in production is due to a careful investment policy such the purchase of Tiger Depack PP that allows a total recovery of the pulp in the pulper and a reduction of the waste material.
The paper factory of Santa Giustina (BL) is today an international benchmark for the production of recycled based coated paperboard and virgin fiber.
The factory produces 250 thousand tons of paperboard per year, uses 265 thousand tons of recycled fibers annually, gives work to 200 employees and 50 external collaborators and it has a series of related industries.
Santa Giustina was born in 1969 in the homonymous village of Val Belluna and then transferred here following the Vajont disaster which destroyed the factory in Longarone. Santa Giustina has always been committed to developing a sustainable business model based on economic growth, employee well-being and respect for the environment. This strategy, in the last 10 years, brought a reduction of 30% in water consumption, of 20% in electricity consumption and of 20% in CO2 emissions.
A responsible management of scraps and waste is fondamental for achieving objectives linked to the increasing sustainability of the production process.
Santa Giustina is an excellent example of circular economy. Its primary objective is the regeneration of the raw materials used in the production processes. Just to give a few numbers: 273,000 tons of pre-consumer waste from industrial activities, 14,000 tons of paper and cardboard packaging from selective collection (companies and offices) and 70,000 tons of waste paper from municipal collection.
Innovation for development
The technological renewal has accompanied the entire activity of the paper mill over the years. In 2014 there was an improvement in production, in quality and in safety throught the complete renovation of the wet end of the paper machine, the replacement of the formers with a layers system and the enlargement of the water treatment plant. In 2017 the improvement of energy performance leading to the reduction of specific gas and electricity consumption. In 2018, a technological upgrade aimed at reducing waste and increasing safety thanks to the installation of a new automatic winder (less handling of reels), a new unwinder for coiler and the installation of a pulper waste cleaning system. Finally, in 2019, an improvement in the automation of the set-up.
“From 2014 until today”, says Massimo Marcer director of the plant since July 2019 and in the paper mill since 1999, “ we invested over € 25 million in Santa Giustina to make the various areas of the plant more efficient, starting from the wet section of the continuous machine, to the end of the machine and the setting up to the thermoelectric plant. We have implemented more modern machines that bring productive and qualitative advantages and a big improvement for safety in the workplace. Thanks to our attention to the evolution of the paper mill we are among the best production plants of coated paperboard in Europe. The commitment in the field of environmental sustainability is then leading us to analyze the processes and to act, where possible, to reduce waste, the use of energy resources, water consumption and emissions thanks to more modern technologies ".
Innovation and sustainability: a concrete and virtuous example
At the first edition (2019) of the Miac-Assocarta Innovation Award, an award conceived by Miac and Assocarta with the technical support of Aticelca, to reward the paper mills introducing elements of innovation in their companies and in their products, Reno De Medici, with the project "Recovery of fibrous material contained in the pulper waste for the production of recycled cardboard", part of the "Innovation for the circular economy" category, presented one of its most recent technological investments: the installation of the new Tiger Depack HS20 PPS. It is an innovative machine which, thanks to a patented vertical centrifugal separation system, manages to reduce the quantity of waste material and to recover all the paper pulp still present in the pulper (see Paper Industry, June 2019, page 50). A great innovation, which brought significant benefits to the company in terms of business, production and in environmental sustainability. A real and virtuous example of circular economy.
Less waste and maximum recovery of paper pulp
"The installation of Tiger Depack HS20 PPS”, says Marcer, “began at the end of 2017 and the continuous cycle operation began in January 2018. From the plant engineering point of view the installation did not require any particular change because the machine was located in a special area devoted to the disposal of pulper waste. The supplier, Cesaro Mac Import, provided us with a machine already prepared for our specific needs and immediately supported us in every aspect, making installation quick and easy.
The machine was born with a plug-in system that allows installation in many and different situations and even in small spaces (this was not the case with Santa Giustina) as it occupies only 21 m2 in its larger version and does not require any services but the electric and water supply.
A real all in one solution! The simplicity of the system allows installation even outdoors and the possibility to work 24 hours a day.
Cesaro Mac Import supports its customers in finding the best placement of the machine within the existing production cycles and in the best start-up and setting.
The pulper is extremely flexible in its composition, therefore each paper mill can adjust its Tiger depack to obtain the maximum result. Cesar Mac Import is an ideal partner and very qualified for this phase.
Santa Giustina paper mill produces four-layer patinated cardboard, and since, above all for the intermediate layer, is used a part of recycled fiber deriving from city collection boxes, corrugated straw and other types of waste, we have inserted the tiger depack pps in the center line on the pulper washing and cleaning system. In the city collection there is always a part of inadequate material: the most common one is plastic. The problem of plastic has always been present in our production cycle; before tiger we treated it with a discontinuous cleaning system. Part of the plastic was cyclically discarded obtaining fiber which was pressed. The remaining material, in our case, went as it was to the internal landfill.
With the inclusion of Tiger, we arranged fortnightly and monthly report. The output of this fairly accurate data shows a weight reduction of the discarded material between 10 and 16% (specifically we are talking about kg of pulper waste per ton of cardboard produced). This figure must be considered in relation to the more than 800 tons of cardboard produced per day, therefore we are talking about very important quantities considering that the reduction of 10-16% per kg per ton recovered is automatically transformed into fiber returned directly to our cycle
These percentages are certainly important and we are talking not only of reduction but and above all of recovery. At the end of the year there are huge mountains of plastic and recovered fiber.
We are therefore able to reduce the quantity of plastic per ton produced, and, above all, we have managed to recover part of the fibrous waste that remained attached to the plastic and which ended up directly in the internal landfill. The part of the rewashed fiber is recovered downstream of the pulper and it always remains in the line of the intermediate layer of our center. Logically a small part will remain attached to the plastic, but the bulk is recovered. Unfortunately, plastic is still going to an internal landfill. We are working on it, in cooperation with the headquarters, to find how to recover and reuse this plastic in another way, but the moment we don’t have the solution. I know others do it and ... let's see, we are confident. For us it would be an advantage to resell or reuse this plastic at, perhaps, zero cost and it would be an advantage for everyone from the environmental poin of view.
Cesaro Mac Import in its experimental plant in Eraclea is applying the Steinert optical selection technology in order to optimize and to obtain reusable matrices from Pulper plastics. The purpose is to increase the efficiency of production cycles in a no Waste perspective.
Therefore, if we look at the advantages deriving from the inclusion of this new technology, the main ones are the reduction in weight of the amount of waste and the recovery of the paper fiber.
Furthermore, by working with a drier and cleaner waste, the surrounding area is more clean and organized.
For paper mills with external landfill there is also the advantage of reducing road trips and as well as disposal costs.
The economic effect are in the numbers I said before: reduction of plastic for landfills, and recovery of almost the same amount of fiber. Fiber has a very high cost for the paper mill whether it comes from city collection or from virgin fiber”.
Reno De Medici Group
RDM Group is the second largest European producer of coated recycled cartonboard, the largest in Italy, France and the Iberian Peninsula. Great importance for RDM Group has the production of virgin fibre cartonboard.The Group is listed on the Star Segment of the Borsa Italiana S.p.A. and Madrid Stock Exchange Market. The headquarters are in Milan but it has a strategic presence internationally thanks to its seven manufacturing plants – three in Italy, two in France, one in Germany and one in Spain -, two sheeting centres and a sales network active in 70 countries.
Cesaro Mac Import (www.cesaromacimport.com) is a company from Eraclea (VE) that owns the Tiger Depack brand (www.tigerdepack.com) It has specialized for over thirty years in the environmental technologies,supply of single machines, design, installation and post-testing assistance of integrated plants for waste treatment. From this experience was born the Tiger system, a project focussed on the improvement of the quality of the material to be sent to anaerobic digestion reducing the presence of plastics. Cesaro Mac Import brings his experience in the field of circular economy applied to the management of pulper waste from paper mills. From the knowledge and experience gained in thirty years of activity in the waste field, Cesaro has patented the Tiger Depack machinery capable of working and solving the long-standing problem of pulp management from paper mills with a view to circular economy. Up to now, this refusal has been sent to landfills, losing its value. Today, through the Tiger Depack PPS - Paper Pul Solution machine- the paper mill is able to recover up to 98% of the paper fiber still present in the dry matrix. The dry material is very low and can be further processed with Steinert selectors which allow the creation of important materials such as PET and Metals to be reintegrated into the various production cycles. The paper production cycle from recycled paper now completes a circular economy process, managing to optimize and to obtain new products where previously there was only a waste.
Cesaro Mac Import promotes the experience of pulper waste treatment from paper mill thanks the results obtained with the placement of its technology in paper plants already working and thanks to the availability of its new Steinert test plant for the selection of materials in Eraclea.