Although the general public views them as ‘timeless’ products, pulp, paper and board are actually subject to constant research. The French paper industry is constantly investing in research programmes targeting the invention of new products or procedures.
The purpose of research and development work is, for example, to improve the barrier properties of packaging paper and board to ensure the best possible conservation of transported products. The development of smart paper, i.e. materials capable of collecting, storing and transmitting information is another example from the field of research. Printed electronic systems make it possible to monitor the cold chain, facilitate stock management and flag up about any eventual impacts or collisions. As such, the paper industry is part of the future circular economy in which intelligent and bio-sourced products will play an important role.
The manufacturing process for pulp, paper and board is also subject to constant innovation to reduce the industry’s environmental footprint. European environmental targets will require drastic reductions in energy consumption and CO2 emissions. This can only be achieved with ground-breaking forms of technology which will revolutionise production processes.