Kruger Biomaterials, a company that generates cellulose filaments from wood fibres for industrial applications, has received $2 million from the federal government.
“We are very proud to contribute to the diversification of the Canadian forest industry.”
The funds will go toward a project to upgrade Kruger Biomaterials’ plant in Trois-Rivières, Quebec. This plant was the first cellulose filament pre-commercial plant in the world, which started up in the early 2010s. The project brought in investments from both the public and private sectors, which collectively committed $43 million to set up the plant and fund its research projects.
“This investment will further unlock the potential of cellulose filaments by accelerating its commercial development and making high-performance bio-based materials available to growing markets,” said Maxime Cossette, vice president of global sustainability and biomaterials for Kruger. “We are very proud to contribute to the diversification of the Canadian forest industry and promote clean technology for the future.”
Cellulose filaments are a material derived from natural and renewable wood fibres. Kruger said these materials can enhance the strength, durability, and functionality of many consumer and industrial products, including in specialty papers, plastic, and concrete. The company claims that these filaments can replace chemical-based materials in various industries, including automotive, construction, and aerospace.
Kruger, the parent company of the biomaterials startup, was founded in Montreal in 1904. It operates production facilities across Canada and the US, which manufacture various materials from recycled fibres and renewable energy. Kruger Biomaterials was officially founded in 2013, after the development of its biomaterial, commercialized under the product name FiloCell.
The government’s investment was made through Investments in Forest Industry Transformation (IFIT) program, which offers non-repayable grants to successful applicants in the Canadian forest industry. Through this year’s federal budget, the government allocated an additional $82.9 million over three years for IFIT.
“Canada’s forest sector remains essential to our economy,” said François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities. “We are proud to work with Kruger Biomaterials Inc. to develop innovative technologies in Canada’s forest sector, which help promote market access for Canadian and Quebecer products.”
Image courtesy Kruger Biomaterials