RDM plans to close Blendecques cartonboard plant

Reno de Medici (RDM) will exit cartonboard production in France. The company has announced plans to close down its Blendecques recycled cartonboard plant in the country. Employee representatives have already been informed of the move. 176 people are affected by the closure.

The group’s only French mill has been facing difficulties for some time, especially since a major fire occurred in March 2022, which entailed a ten-month stoppage. Even after the restart, problems continued. At the end of last year, a flooding prompted the company to switch off production again for some time. Most recently the mill was still running at reduced capacity.

RDM explained that the site had been facing structural difficulties for many years and was making losses, with no improvement expected in the mid-to-long term. "RDM Group has made strong efforts to relaunch the Blendecques plant, notably by making significant investments following the fire in March 2022, but this has not been enough. The situation is no longer economically sustainable. The site's production costs are too high, and its production capacity too low, to enable it to remain competitive in a European market," the company said in a statement.

The announcement comes shortly after the company's decision to restart the Villa Santa Lucia mill in Italy. Here, the problems were related to issues concerning the site's wastewater and sludge treatment which have now partly been solved. A closure of the Italian mill could therefore be averted.#

The Blendecques mill produces coated and uncoated recycled board with a capacity of 140,000 tpy. The board is used for packaging of food producs, detergents, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics on the European market.

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