Multiple uses of wood

Alternative to the use of non-renewable materials with new bioproducts produced from wood components.

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Investment in new products

Amounts invested in R&D for the development of new products and agreements with other organizations (BRL thousands)

Industrial R&D+I11,831
Forestry R&D+I14,389
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Management of Multiple Uses of Wood

Klabin’s commitment is to be a global benchmark for responsible solutions that meet the constant changes of society, offering multi-purpose, renewable, recyclable and biodegradable forestry products. In order to contribute to a sustainable economy and inspire final consumer choices, the Company prioritizes the prosperity of the planet, aligning its sustainability strategy, generating value for its investors, employees and business partners.
To achieve its aspirations, Klabin encourages investments in forestry and industrial projects encompassing the entire production chain.

Klabin’s Forestry Research, Development and Innovation area is based on conducting projects included in different lines of research:
• Genetic Improvement of Eucalyptus;
• Genetic Improvement of Pine;
• Cloning;
• Forestry Biotechnology,
• Phytosanitation;
• Nutrition and Forestry;
• Ecophysiology.

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We can cite the following highlights of 2020:
– Formation of populations of classical genetic improvement of pine and eucalyptus in PR and SC, for the purpose of attaining a genetic gain in the medium and long term to recommend new hybrids with greater productive potential in fibers;
– Expansion of the genetic base of Eucalyptus and Corymbia, through the introduction of new genetic materials, aiming to guarantee new alleles for adverse conditions such as climate change and expansion in new production sites;
– Development of genetic improvement strategies for the genus Corymbia from the selection of hybrid clones with high production potential aiming at the production of new clones suitable for water stress conditions, as well as the increase of the basic density of the wood;
– Protection of six cultivars of high-yielding hybrid eucalyptus clones in order to guarantee Klabin’s genetic heritage;
– Increased production capacity for improved seeds through the implantation of Pinus taeda, Pinus maximinoi and Pinus tecunumanii orchards;
– Feasibility of producing elite family seedlings of Pinus taeda on an operational scale via the vegetative propagation technique;
– Development of 250 new Pinus taeda clones by somatic embryogenesis for the purpose of expanding the experimental network of the clonal selection program;
– Continuity of the internal technical committee called Forest, Industry and Research (FIP), focused on understanding the quality characteristics of the wood and the solution of deviations that may have an impact on the quality of the final product;
– Installation of 32 stations for meteorological forecasts and climate monitoring of Klabin’s area of ​​operation in PR;
– Great progress in the area of ​​Forest Biotechnology, with the development and implementation of biotechnological techniques, such as somatic embryogenesis and molecular markers applied in the selection of superior clones;
– Development of a computerized research and information security management system (Labware/Lims) of the forestry research base.
Klabin is constantly attentive to research related to transgenic species – however, and above all else due to guidelines related to the certification of the forests, the company does not use them in its processes.

Klabin’s Research, Development and Industrial Innovation area conducts research in five areas of activity:
• Development of the raw forest material for pulp, paper and new materials;
• Paper optimization and new applications, focusing on functional barriers;
• Biorefinery (multiple uses of the forest base, mainly lignin);
• Optimization of environmental processes, reuse of products generated in the process, reduction in water, energy and steam consumption;
• Nanotechnology – fractions of pulp in micro or nanoscale and application in new products.

Continuous advancement in wood quality assessments of new genetic materials planted at Klabin, with the following highlights:
1) Pinus maximinoi, for the supply of long fiber, with greater forest production potential and differentials in the quality of the final product. The results of these studies were recognized in international awards, as the best “Technical Paper” presented in 2019, at the Tappi Peers event in the USA. They were also the focus of another doctoral thesis in 2020.
2) Evaluation of the quality of the wood of more than 1,123 Eucalyptus spp. trees, with the application of near infrared technology for rapid prediction of the chemical, physical and pulping characteristics of the wood.

Actions aimed at adding properties to paper in order to increase its effectiveness as a sustainable packaging material, in the form of functional barriers, meeting the growing demands of the market and society, as well as the continuous advance of its intrinsic characteristics, such as mechanical resistance and surface quality . Advances in the development of barriers to various substances (water, steam, fat, oxygen), achieving more effective results in line with stakeholder expectations.

Aligned with the investments made in the last year for the creation of the Pilot Plant park, the Company’s first lignin extraction plant developed an unprecedented product in the Brazilian market – pine kraft lignin. More than 40 tons of this material were produced, materializing more than 20 strategic partnerships for R&D projects and future customers. The microfibrillated cellulose plant provided five industrial tests focused on the development of new papers and boards, with differentiated properties in relation to the market. At the same time, different generations of pulp-based products were also developed for application in other markets, culminating in the success case: production of gel alcohol with cellulosic thickener. From this application it was possible to develop an alternative new ingredient for cosmetic products, totally renewable and sustainable using microfibrillated cellulose (MFC).

Facing the substitution of non-renewable materials with biodegradable and renewable pulp fiber-based alternatives, projects in nanotechnology in the use of cellulose fractions on the micro scale (microfibrillated cellulose – MFC) and nano scale (nanocrystalline cellulose – CNC) have progressed to pilot applications in paper and packaging.

Another application of lignocellulosic materials (MFC, cellulose and wood fines) was destined for the production of composites to substitute plastic, which could represent a new market applied to more sustainable materials. A face shield was developed in partnership with Senai, with the application of 10% cellulose to replace polyethylene. This material was distributed in all Klabin’s health units, in support of the fight against Covid-19.

Sustainability is a milestone that is always present in the Company’s research and, in search of zero landfill, we implemented, in the Rio Negro (PR) unit, an initiative using sludge from the Effluent Treatment Station to manufacture bricks with a local partner.

Advances in research on the use of wood extracts and forest residues, forming green fuels – Crude Tall Oil and Bio-Oil – in order to take advantage of 100% of the forest potential.
With the Puma II Project, Klabin will have a line with the capacity to produce 450,000 tons of Eukaliner® per year, the world’s first kraftliner made from 100% eucalyptus. The Technology Center developed works involving the study of the pulp and paper production process, from the quality of the wood to the simulations of the physical properties of the paper. The goal was to monitor the development of the installation of the new pulp plant and paper machines, evaluating the quality guarantees of the process and product to be introduced in the market.