Microfibrillated Cellulose from spruce

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A Norwegian company has built the world’s first commercial-scale production facility for Microfibrillated Cellulose (MFC). It has a capacity of processing 10.000 metric tonnes/year for deriving 10% paste (1000 metric tonnes dry matter).

The input material is derived from Norwegian spruce. The fiber improves rheology and stability, and has the capacity of enhancing structure in many different product formulations.

Thanks to a fibrillation process, the cellulose fibres are converted into a three dimensional network of microfibrils with an ultra-high surface area. These microfibrils are called MFC.

The fiber results a suitable material for the production of adhesives and sealants (performance enhancer), paint and coatings (improves rheology and stability), agricultural chemicals (performance enhancer for pesticides), personal care products (performance enhancer for skin creams and sprays), home care products (replaces surfactants in laundry soap), and construction (additive for cement).

The practice moves collaboration between spruce growers, the MFC producer and end users applying the material. This contribute to bring benefits for farmers given the increasing demand of spruce and the value creation of cellulose feedstock.

The establishment of a biorefinery with a new high-value product has contributed to create new direct jobs (57 Full-time equivalents by 2020) and indirect jobs throughout the entire value chain.

Nikos Kyriakoulis