UPM to establish eucalyptus R&D facility in Uruguay

The UPM Fray Bentos mill.

UPM will strengthen its research on eucalyptus fibre and build a competence centre at the Fray Bentos pulp mill in Uruguay. The new centre including expansion of the existing laboratory facilities will be operational during the first half of 2012.

The new competence centre will focus on the research of eucalyptus species and their impact on end product properties. The Fray Bentos competence centre will evaluate the aspects of the eucalyptus species growing in Uruguay with the aim to accelerate the process of selecting the best trees to be planted in the future.

“At the Fray Bentos mill site we can combine our expertise in the pulp process with the plantation forestry operations know-how in an innovative way. The new competence centre will also enable us to strengthen the cooperation with our customers in product development,” says Sami Saarela, Vice President for UPM’s pulp production.

The Fray Bentos competence centre will operate as part of UPM’s global R&D Network. The competence centre will increase research activities and training of the Uruguayan engineers in the development of eucalyptus fibers.