Blog
27 Mar 2015, 0:00 CET

Theme of the week: Consumerboard

In November last year the trainee group visited Gruvön to learn about the Containerboard business segment in BillerudKorsnäs. This time the theme was Consumerboard which meant that the group would visit the mills in Gävle and Frövi including a trip to Tetra Pak in Lund. As usual when we meet, there are a lot of interesting things on the agenda and we will describe a selection of what we did in this post.

Monday

The week started off at lunch at the Gävle mill where we met Per Eriksson from the local HR who welcomed us. After that, Rafael Carvajal, responsible for one of the board machines in Gävle, talked about how cartonboard is produced and how the production looks like in Gävle.

Since the theme of the week was about the Consumerboard business segment, where Tetra Pak is our largest customer, Fredrik Lindbom, Manager Business Development Tetra Pak, gave a presentation about Tetra Pak and their products, market and how we in BillerudKorsnäs collaborate with them.

The day concluded with Mikael Alexandersson, Manager Business segment Liquid Packaging Board, who presented the liquid packaging board business segment, its market and future growth. Liquid packaging board makes up the majority of the production in the Gävle mill, as well as in the Frövi mill.

The trainee group ready for a mill tour wearing safety equipment.

Tuesday

On Tuesday we were introduced to the Supply Chain Management department. So, what do they do? The concept for our overall business view is that “it starts and ends with the customer” and the supply chain management team work more intense with this. They are looking at what is creating customer value and also how will this be done in the future. Another part, which the trainee Fredrik currently works with, is to predict how much and when we sell our products, which is then used as a foundation for the strategic and operational planning process.

The day continued with a session about how to work to improve maintenance and availability performance.

Before we had a guided tour at the mill, Magnus Kangas, Mill Director, presented the history of the mill. Currently, 900 employees work at the mill in Gävle and statistically; every fourth aseptic package in the world are produced here. That gave us some perspective on how much we actually produce only in the Gävle mill and we were impressed when we saw the two board machines in reality.

Since the Frövi mill was on the agenda the following day, Tuesday ended with a bus tour to Örebro which is located around 30 km from the Frövi mill site.

A model over the mill in Gävle

Wednesday
Now it was time for our home mill: Frövi, where around 630 people work. For the first half of the day Stefan Ericsson, Project coordinator Ahead 550, talked about the production in Frövi and the Ahead 550 project which is an investment project of 900 MSEK to increase the production capacity in Frövi and Rockhammar.

We also got a tour of the board machine. Having seen the two board machines in Gävle it is interesting to compare how the production works in Gävle and Frövi and the sheer size of the machines. Even though they produce similar products the machines are not identical.

After lunch Anna Jonhed, Director of R&D, talked about R&D, how they work and the relation to innovation in our company.

The final part of the day was a visit to the Packlab at the mill which works with packaging solutions for the cartonboard market. We also did a sensory test to evaluate which board that is the most appropriate to use in food contact.

This is an example of innovative work at Packlab – the strip used for open a package can look differently

Thursday

For the last day at the Frövi mill, we talked about how we work with continuous improvements. Örjan Bergström, who is working with Operational Excellence, took us through a tour from the implementation phase of our improvement methodology, where we are today and what the future will look like. To support him, four of the trainees (Anna S, Johan, Lina and Mattias) took care of some sessions since they are working as Improvement Coordinators at their home departments. The Frövi mill’s vision is that “we constantly want to improve” and that was the day all about. The day ended already after lunch since we were going to Lund to visit Tetra Pak on Friday.

Friday

At the start of the week we got a presentation of Tetra Pak and now it was time to see a bit more in detail what they do. During the visit we got to know a bit more about Tetra Pak’s products (they have a lot!), how they work with WCM (World Class Manufacturing) which is a methodology for continuous improvements. We also got to see their pilot plant for product verifications.

A so called “experience room” at Tetra Pak in Lund. BillerudKorsnäs is Tetra Pak’s largest supplier of board.

In the afternoon it was time to say goodbye and go back home after a crammed yet interesting week of our business area Consumerboard.

As trainees in BillerudKorsnäs, we can conclude that we get to see a lot while travelling around and we take a lot of impressions and questions back to our home departments. This week was not an exception. The two mills in Gävle and Frövi produce a variety of products for liquid packaging board and cartonboard – the large volumes are hard to imagine: material for hundreds of millions of packages are produced each day.

//Anna S & Daniel