New fibre pulp is made from strong, tough virgin fibres. The raw material comes straight from forests that are managed with a sustainable approach. There are two manufacturing methods, mechanical and chemical pulp. Mechanical pulp is made by grinding the wood to break it down and separate the cellulose fibres. This results in high fibre extraction, about 95 percent. The fibres produced using this process are not as strong as those found in chemical pulp.
Chemical pulp is produced by boiling wood chips with chemicals to separate the cellulose fibres. The chemicals that are used when boiling the wood chips are recovered and reused in the process. The advantage of chemical pulp is that it produces stronger paper because the fibres are cleaner and longer than those found in mechanical pulp. The chemical production process uses less energy, but is more expensive because only 50 percent of the raw material is utilised.
Fibres from recycled paper are used here. The paper is dissolved in water and fed into a grinder. Printing inks, fillers, coatings, metal staples, adhesive remnants and too short fibres are washed and filtered out. The aim is to obtain clean and long fibres for making new paper. A cellulose fibre can be reused 4-7 times before it is no longer usable.
Recycled pulp production requires a great deal of water and places exacting demands on water treatment plants to minimise environmental impact. Recycled pulp produces a relatively soft paper with good absorption properties. Its strength, however, is lower and it creates more dust than paper made from new fibre. There are two ways to make recycled fibre – from white recycled paper, such as printer paper, and from newspapers.
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