The 3D fibre product demo plant jointly owned by Metsä Group's innovation company Metsä Spring and Valmet was inaugurated in Äänekoski on Monday, 22 August 2022. The demo plant was inaugurated by Minister of Science and Culture, Petri Honkonen, President and CEO of Metsä Group Ilkka Hämälä and CEO of Valmet, Pasi Laine.
The new Muoto® product, which is manufactured by the demo plant, is a significant new opening in the packaging market. Made from renewable and sustainably grown wood raw material, Muoto is an excellent alternative to plastics in many end uses, for example food packaging of different sizes and shapes.
“It is important that new types of value-added products are developed from Finnish pulp, of which Muoto is a great example. It is a packaging material made from fossil-free raw materials for people's everyday life. We continue the development work towards a broader business,” says Ilkka Hämälä.
“Valmet wants to continuously develop new innovations to speed up the green transition. In the 3D fibre product, together with Metsä Group, we have combined our expertise seamlessly, and it is a pleasure to continue this significant development work together in the demo plant that is now being inaugurated”, says Pasi Laine.
The construction of the approximately 20 million euro demo plant for the Muoto product began in Metsä Group's Äänekoski integrated mill site at the end of 2020 and the test production was initiated in May 2022.
The properties of the Muoto product and the production method are now further developed by using the demo plant and the product's potential is also tested on the market. If the market interest and product functionality can be demonstrated on the current scale, Metsä Group will consider building a larger production facility.