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Japan's Rengo completes major upgrade at Tonegawa plant in Ibaraki prefecture

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Japan's Rengo completes major upgrade at Tonegawa plant in Ibaraki prefecture

April 22, 2012 - 17:59

OSAKA, Japan, April 10, 2012 (Press Release) -Rengo Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Kita-ku, Osaka; President & CEO: Kiyoshi Otsubo) announces that it has completed a major refurbishment of its Tonegawa Division (Bando-shi, Ibaraki Prefecture). The Division, which is one of Rengo's key divisions, is comprised of three plants involved in paperboard production, printing and converting, and the production of folding cartons including multi-packs, is one of Rengo's largest facilities by site area. This multi-faceted site, unique even within the Rengo Group, has undergone a large-scale refurbishment.

In addition to producing approximately 320,000 tons of paperboard annually (including containerboard and boxboard), the Division supplies a wide range of products and services in order to meet customers' diverse packaging needs. This includes the printing of processed paperboard for decorative corrugated packaging, as well as the manufacturing of processed paperboard with a variety of features, such as water-resistant and anti-corrosive properties, and folding cartons, particularly multi-packs.

The refurbishment of the Tonegawa Division was conducted as a project to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the site, which began operation in October 1961. The project's main initiatives were the establishment of a biomass incineration facility, remodeling of the No. 1 paper machine for boxboard, construction of an automated rack warehouse at the folding carton plant, and a complete rebuild of the main office block. In addition to rationalizing and streamlining operations, the project also aimed to build a production system whereby Rengo's key environmental concept of "Less Weight, Less Carbon" could be realized, and whereby ideal types of packaging that are lighter and thinner and cause less CO2 emissions could be created.

As a key division of "General Packaging Industry" Rengo, the Tonegawa Division will continue striving to contribute to local communities and to meet its customers' packaging needs through continual innovation, aiming for packaging manufacturing that is friendly to both people and the environment.

Key Aspects of the Refurbishment

1. Establishment of biomass incineration facility

A biomass incineration facility has been constructed to effectively utilize paper sludge and other waste emitted from the plant's paper production process as boiler fuel. By efficiently utilizing paper sludge, which had previously been incinerated as waste, it is anticipated that CO2 emissions will be cut by approximately 6,000 tons per year.

2. Remodeling of the No. 1 paper machine

Machines used in the first step in the papermaking process, known as the wire part, have been upgraded, further improving the quality of boxboard (clay coated board), including making it easier to print on.

3. Construction of automated rack warehouse at folding carton plant

By automating the shipping of products into and out of the warehouse, the new machinery improves the efficiency and safety of operations, as well as allows inventory control using IT systems.

4. Complete rebuild of main office block

The new building was designed with a comprehensive focus on environmental-friendliness, including energy-saving measures. In addition to installing solar panels on the roof for the photovoltaic power generating system, the office has been fitted with LED lighting and movement sensors that automatically switch off lights when no-one is present.

5. Effective utilization of natural energy

Rengo is working to make full use of natural energy. In addition to the main office building, solar panels have also been installed at other sites, and lamps lining onsite roads are powered by miniature wind turbines.