At Mercer, we aim to be a preferred provider of renewable bio-based products, produced sustainably by our teams in a safe, efficient environment. We optimize stakeholder value and respond to market needs through integrated strategies, modern technology, and proficient use of our resources. We are committed to supporting a healthy environment and preserving our natural resources by sourcing wood from sustainably managed forests. We do this through the dedication of our team members, as we continue to grow and remain proud of our accomplishments and the legacy of excellence that we uphold.
We are one of the world’s largest producers of market pulp and a growing leader in the solid wood products space. Our large-scale, modern mills produce not only NBSK (softwood) and NBHK (hardwood) pulp, but also biomass-based green energy and bioextractives, and we operate one of the world’s largest softwood lumber facilities.
We produce electrical and thermal energy from biomass byproducts created from the pulping and sawmilling processes which reduce waste in our mills and maximizes forest resources.
In August 2021, we acquired the Katerra CLT facility, located in Spokane Valley, Washington, US, renamed Mercer Mass Timber. Mercer Mass Timber is a modern 253,000 square foot facility with a capacity of 13 million square feet per year. Based on 2 shifts, 20 hours per day, 5 days a week, this means a yearly production of 140,000 cubic metres. Mercer Mass Timber represents about 30% of the current North American mass timber manufacturing capacity.
In 2019, we expanded in several locations; the most significant of which was at Mercer Timber Products Friesau, where we are midway through a growth project that will turn the sawmill into one of the largest in the world. We also grew our forestry business with the commencement of Mercer Forestry Services, a Canadian BC-based harvesting contractor that will support additional residual pulpwood recovery for Mercer Celgar.
In December 2018, we acquired Daishowa-Marubeni International Ltd., which included a bleached NBS and NBH kraft pulp mill near Peace River, Alberta and a 50% interest in Cariboo Pulp and Paper, a bleached kraft pulp mill in Quesnel, British Columbia.
In October 2018, we completed the acquisition of Santanol, which owns and leases approximately 2,500 hectares of Indian Sandalwood plantations in Kununurra, Western Australia, as well as an extraction plant in Perth, Western Australia.
In April 2017, we established Mercer Timber Products with the acquisition of one of Germany’s largest sawmills near Friesau, Germany. Capable of producing green, kiln-dried and planed lumber for all global markets, Mercer Timber Products Friesau is a manufacturer of softwood lumber products procured from sustainably managed forests, enabling our global clients to secure sustainable and quality wood products. The sawmill has an annual production capacity of -550 MMfbm.
The Blue Mill Project was a $49 million capital project that increased production and efficiency through debottlenecking initiatives and the installation of an additional 46 MW steam turbine. The project increased the mill’s annual pulp production capacity by 30,000 tonnes, as well as producing an additional 109,000 MWh of saleable surplus renewable energy.
This $61 million capital investment included the installation of a second turbine generator to increase the mill’s energy generating capacity to 100 MW and an upgrade to the mill’s bark boiler and steam facilities. Following this project, Celgar finalized a 10-year Electricity Purchase Agreement with BC Hydro, a local utility, under which it sells its excess energy at favourable green energy rates.
Project Blue Goose was a diverse but integrated $24 million capital project designed to achieve operational efficiencies, increase production, and improve environmental stewardship, including reduced consumption of energy and chemicals. Upon completion of the project, the mill’s annual production capacity increased to approximately 500,000 tonnes.
In 2006, the last of Mercer's paper assets were divested, leaving Mercer to focus on high-quality northern bleached softwood kraft pulp (NBSK).
In February 2005, we acquired the Celgar pulp mill for $210 million-plus defined working capital. At this time, the mill had an annual pulp capacity of 430,000 tonnes and one electrical turbine with a capacity of 52 MW.
In September 2004, we completed the construction of one of the largest NBSK pulp mills in the world, Stendal. This state-of-the-art single line mill near the town of Arneburg, Germany, was constructed at a cost of over $1 billion (of which approximately $276 million was financed through government grants) and was designed to have an annual production capacity of approximately 552,000 tonnes.
Five years after Rosenthal’s acquisition, we invested approximately $386 million (of which approximately $101 million was financed through government grants) into the mill to convert its operations into a more environmentally-friendly kraft (sulphate) pulp mill. Significant upgrades were also made to the mill which increased its annual pulp capacity to 280,000 tonnes, reducing operating costs and improving operational efficiencies.
Rosenthal was operating as a sulphite pulp mill and despite upgrades since its construction, the mill was at risk of being shut down as it was deemed “uncompetitive” with an annual pulp capacity of 160,000 tonnes. We saw an opportunity and acquired the Rosenthal mill in 1994.
Our first entry into the forest products business came with the acquisition of a large German group of previously state-operated pulp and paper facilities.
The modernization project transformed Celgar into a high-quality, continuous process pulp mill with modern power generation and environmental treatment facilities.
As one of the largest sawmills in the world, Friesau continues to increase its production through strategic investments and modernizations within its facility.
Although initially designed to produce only NBHK (hardwood) pulp, the Peace River mill produces both high-quality NBHK (hardwood) and NBSK (softwood) pulp for global demand.
Producing NBSK (softwood), this mill opened in 1972 with a daily production of 675 tonnes; however, some areas were built out subsequently, such as the one-stage oxygen delignification plant in 1991, thereby increasing CPP’s production capacity.
It was the first pulp mill to be built in the interior of British Columbia and spurred the development of the town of Castlegar.
It was originally built as a paper mill and transformed into a pulp mill in 1970 and continues to produce high-quality softwood pulp today.