SAO PAULO, Dec. 15, 2020 (PPI Latin America) -One of the world’s biggest carton packs producers, SIG Combibloc Group, announced that it is only sourcing boxboard from FSC certified suppliers. Reaching 100% of certified paper is a challenge, sustainability manager Isabela de Machi toldPPI Latin America: “If all companies were to announce a similar plan, there would not be enough boxboard available in the world.”
The year of 2020 brought to light an unbalance in several supply chains, as demand for packaging increased with more people staying at their homes while producers and converters tried to work with low inventories. Sources in the boxboard industry say it was no different for the global liquid packaging board (LPB) market, the kind of material used in the beverage cartons SIG produces.
“We had to work very closely with our suppliers to show them how relevant this strategy of certified paper was for us, so we could count on having the market ready for the kind of demand we have,” De Marchi said. The executive, who is responsible for the South American region, said SIG did not face any issues with lack of supply this year, but recognized that demand did increase in 2020, making the efforts together with FSC certified suppliers even more intense.
According to De Marchi, assuring that the entire paper supply is FSC certified is part of a roadmap set by the company to secure the sustainable origin of all its raw materials. The company’s goal by 2030 is to have all its raw materials coming from certified sources by 2030. Besides paper, aluminum and plastic are in the focus.
In Latin America, SIG has been reporting accelerated growth. During the third quarter of 2020, revenues grew 24% in constant currency in the Americas, with the company highlighting the impact of greater demand in Brazil and Mexico. In Brazil, SIG said, at-home milk consumption increased with the payment of welfare benefits due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The company’s Brazilian plant in Campo Largo, in the state of Paraná, reached record production in the last three months of the year. For 2021, it expects to grow volumes and revenues by two digits.
The region has only one supplier of LPB: Klabin. The company stated in a recent meeting with analysts and investors that its boxboard sales in Brazil surged 10% in the second half of 2020, compared with the same period of 2019.
“We were surprised with the Brazilian boxboard market, which had been stable and now is growing, following increased demand for sustainable products,” paper unit director Flavio Deganutti told investors during the meeting. The good results may lead to an expansion project for boxboard, possibly focused on LPB as well. Klabin is analyzing once again if the second paper machine on the Puma II project will be entirely focused on kraftliner or if it will also produce boxboard. The decision should made in the first quarter of 2021.