Cascades Inc., a leader in the recovery and manufacturing of green packaging and tissue products, announced today a $21-million investment in its Cascades Inopak (Drummondville) and Plastiques Cascades (Kingsey Falls) plants in order to acquire equipment enabling it to increase its production of food packaging, primarily for the fresh protein market.
The Cascades Inopak plant in Drummondville will benefit from a $15-million investment. This will be used to expand the existing building and to install a high-performance rPET film manufacturing line that is unique in Canada and which includes a built-in, cutting-edge decontamination unit. This will make it possible to significantly increase the production capacity of IntegralTM packaging, which is made from recycled PET, is recyclable and allows food in certain markets—such as fresh protein—to be kept for double the amount of time, thus radically reducing food waste.
Nearly $6M will be invested in the Kingsey Falls Plastiques Cascades plant to modernize equipment, notably by adding a new extrusion line and two recycling lines, which will increase the production capacity by 25% and double the plant's internal recycling capacity. The Kingsey Falls plant produces EVOK®, the first polystyrene foam tray in North America to contain at least 25% recycled materials. These investments will facilitate an eventual increase in this percentage and, by extension, further reduce the CO2 emissions of products marketed by our customers.
"The strategic investments announced today will strengthen Cascades' position in the food packaging segment, by increasing our production capacity thus providing the tools to increase our market share. They will generate more than 10 new jobs, primarily in the production and sales sectors, and will consolidate the 216 jobs that already exist in these two units. We are particularly proud of the fact that we lend our recovery expertise to the food sector and that we are taking the fight against food waste to yet another level," said Cascades President and CEO Mario Plourde.
"In addition to our fresh protein containers, we are pleased to provide our customers with produce packaging that offers unique environmental added value. Cascades is the first company in North America to manufacture low-density PET packaging containing 80% recycled PET. Compared to the competition we can reduce the quantity of materials by approximately 10% for each container made. In addition to using fewer resources, our products are recyclable and provide optimum performance," added Luc Langevin, President and Chief Operating Officer of Cascades Specialty Products Group.
The announcement regarding these strategic investments was attended by Dominique Anglade, Deputy Premier, Minister of Economy, Science and Innovation, Alexandre Cusson, Mayor of Drummondville, as well as Cascades customers, suppliers and employees, among others. Cascades also acknowledges the government's contribution to this project in the form of a $6-million loan from Investissement Québec. Furthermore, Drummondville has begun infrastructure work in order to make the expansion of Cascades Inopak possible.
Founded in 1964, Cascades produces, converts and markets packaging and tissue products that are composed mainly of recycled fibres. The Company employs 11,000 women and men, who work in close to 90 production units in North America and Europe. With its management philosophy, half a century of experience in recycling, and continuous efforts in research and development as driving forces, Cascades continues to deliver the innovative products that customers have come to rely on. Cascades' shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol CAS.
For more information, visit www.cascades.com.