A southwestern Arkansas pulp and paper mill is shutting down one of its paper machines effective immediately. Located in Ashdown, this mill will continue to produce paper and ramp up pulp production.
The Ashdown mill, operated by Domtar, will see one of its two paper machines shut down immediately. Domtar executives say the Ashdown mill will continue to produce 200,000 short tons of paper, down from a reported 265,000 short tons in 2018.
“I wish to sincerely thank colleagues impacted by the closures and recognize their hard work and contribution to Domtar over many years. As difficult as these actions are, we believe they are necessary in light of the declining market for uncoated freesheet paper. We will be working closely with our customers to assure they continue to receive the high quality products and exceptional service they have come to expect from us,” John D. Williams, Domtar President and CEO, said in a statement.
Ashdown’s mill is expected produce 70,000 air-dried metric tons (ADMT) of softwood and fluff pulp. This production is also set to increase over the coming 12 months.
Domtar converted one of the mill’s paper machines, allowing it to produce premium fluff pulp. This conversion, made in 2016, is Domtar’s largest capital investment.
The company is also shutting down a paper machine in Port Huron, Mich. This machine closure is scheduled to take place by mid-November.
According to its company website, Domtar operates 13 pulp and paper mills, as well as 10 paper converting facilities. Annually, the company produces approximately 3 million tons of paper and 1.8 million ADMT of market pulp.
“The closure of the two paper machines will enable us to right-size our paper production capacity with our customer demand. This proactive measure is necessary due to increased imports and declining paper demand,” added Williams.