Finnish UPM-Kymmene has largely completed the expansion of its Chudovo birch plywood mill in Russia, which began in autumn 2017. The first test runs on the newly installed equipment have already been carried out. According to an announcement published on 9 April, the first batches are already on their way to customers in Europe and Africa.
As part of the investment package budgeted at €50m, a new machine park was set up, which will increase the annual production capacity at the Chudovo site by 45,000 m³ from the previous 110,000 m³ plywood to 155,000 m³. In addition to increasing capacity, the investment has also expanded UPM's product portfolio in Chudovo. New products include the WISA-Birch LG (Long Grained) range of longitudinally veneered raw plywood.
A large part of the new machinery comes from Raute. The Finnish machine manufacturer has, for example, supplied the equipment for peeling and drying veneers, the assembly lines and veneer laying stations, the press and coating lines as well as scanner and moisture measuring systems. In addition to expanding the production facilities, a new biomass cogeneration plant with a capacity of 19 MW was built on the plant site, in which the production residues from plywood production are used to generate energy.