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Registration and Opening Remarks
Registration Opens
Opening Remarks and TAPPI Update
Chelsea Kertes – Conference Producer, Smithers
Lisa Stephens – Division Manager, Pulp & Paper and Nanotechnology, TAPPI
Session I: The Specialty Paper Sector – Present & Future
Setting the Scene...Market Considerations for the Specialty Sector Going Forward
PANEL: Opportunities and Growth as the Industry Moves Forward
  • Christophe Jordan, Managing Director, Translucent Papers, Arjowiggins
  • Peter Desilets – Managing Director, Pacoon Sustainability Concepts GmbH
  • Kris Burton – Chief Operating Officer, HSMG
  • Patrick Rowse, Sustainability Manager | People Operation, Delivery Hero
The specialty paper sector continues to develop and innovate so that it can exploit new opportunities in line with technological and societal changes.  This panel looks to explore the views and thoughts of participants for opportunities (and threats) for the sector in a post pandemic, more sustainably aware, climate changing world.
Networking Break
Session II: Paper Chemistries and Processing Innovations
Do you think microfibrillated cellulose is too complicated and exotic? Think again!
The use of microfibrillated cellulose to enhance paper value can be perceived as a complicated and exotic solution, partially due to the perceived lack of commercial examples and media exposure of MFC as a material offering a large step change in product development. The reality is that the use of MFC to enhance paper value can be simple in both application and production of the MFC itself. The goal of this presentation is to illustrate a few application examples, including full scale results and the potential value they can bring with an emphasis on projecting these results to specialty paper grades.
Ronald Lai | Manager, Paper and Packaging Application, FiberLean Technologies Ltd.
Charge Management in the Wet End
Charge is one of the basic properties of matter that causes it to experience forces: anionic charge attracts cationic charge. In the speciality papermaking process, anionic contaminations like coating colour are eliminated with a cationic fixing agent; other cationic additives like strength agents are designed to attach to anionic fibers. The efficiency of these charge attachments is directly connected to the efficiency of the speciality papermaking process: fixing agent accidentally adsorbed to fibers for example will subdue the fibers` ability to take strength agents. This in turn means, that measuring the charge to understand how materials interact, permits to optimize these interactions and as such, optimize the entire process.

The presentation will point out with case studies a strategic way from first measurements in the lab to an automatic fixative control and with this reducing quality variation. Balancing cost and quality of speciality paper is most important.

Todd Jordan | Americas Solutions Manager, BTG
Applied Artificial Intelligence for Automatic Paper Quality Improvement - a Case Study in Autonomous Control of Wet End Processes
Problem/Challenge: The goal of this project was to autonomously control a part of a tissue mill’s continuous manufacturing process using artificial intelligence and predictive analytics to reduce raw material consumption while maintaining the product quality within the specification limit.
Solution: The ProcessMiner AutoPilot real-time predictive system solved the problem by making recommendations and prescribing solutions for the paper mill to minimize raw materials and reduce costs while maintaining both speed and product quality. The results were unprecedented in manufacturing (as quoted by the plant) achieving a 25% reduction in wet strength chemical and 98% adherence to the target specification.
Dr. Kamran Paynabar | Co-founder and CSO, ProcessMiner
CMCs contribution to sustainable barrier applications
Mega trends, consumer awareness and increasing regulatory implications are reinforcing the importance of sustainability in the specialty paper value chain. Metrics such as recyclability and biodegradability are used alongside technical performance as selection criteria for ingredients. Increasingly, ingredients are selected based on their impact on the sustainability of the manufacturing process and of the end-product. In this presentation, we will show that a bio-based and biodegradable barrier can be achieved with tailor-made CMC (Carboxymethyl Cellulose), thus providing an alternative to fossil-based ingredients. Repulpability, compostability, recyclability and the fact that CMC is cellulose based makes it a perfect fit to the fiber substrates. We will demonstrate that there are multiple factors, which must be considered during the barrier concept development. With practical examples, we will show how the concept functions with different paper grades. In addition to technical functionality we will show how sustainability is an integral part of our CMC value chain assessment. All this contributes to the manufacturers’ ability to produce more sustainable barrier products.
Dr. Jürgen Luchtenberg | Technical Support and Development Manager, Nouryon
Precision Cut Synthetic and Non-Wood Fibers for Specialty Papers
There are many synthetic and non-wood fibers available to enhance the performance of specialty papers.  This presentation will review the variety of synthetic cut and fibrillated fibers along with select non-wood fibers available to the specialty papermaker.  These fibers can be used to enhance strength and durability, provide dimensional stability, chemical resistance and heat sealability, and improve embossing fidelity.  Some of these nontraditional, non-wood cellulosic fibers can be used by the specialty papermaker to respond to customer demand for packaging and print media that contain fibers from the same raw materials as used for their products.
T. Scott Frasca | Technical Sales Representative, MiniFibers
Sustainable/ Earth Friendly Barrier Starches for Oil and Grease Resistance
Sustainable/ Earth Friendly Barrier Starches are replacing the use of Fluorochemicals to provide oil and grease resistance to fast food/ quick-serve packaging.  This barrier starch technology provides a renewable, sustainable, earth-friendly solution for these packaging application requirements, principally managed through the use of fluorochemical.  High levels of oil and grease resistance, together with an environmentally responsible composition/ sourcing, make these barrier starches the ideal choice for use in today’s environmentally discerning packaging climate.
Today the use of fluorochemicals in food contact packaging is coming under fire related to both environmental and health concerns associated with its use in food packaging.  Quick Service Restaurant brand owners are also mandating the elimination of this chemical from their packaging for both domestic and global markets.  Many states have enacted regulations limiting/ prohibiting fluorochemical (PFOA/ PFOS) use in food contact packaging and the list continues to grow.  The principle concerns of fluorochemical are related to known health issues associated with the bioaccumulation of this chemical in the human body, as well as its impact on animals around the globe due to the movement of contaminated groundwater around the globe.  
Producers of Quick Service Packaging materials using this new generation of barrier starch coatings are seeing higher performance to their application, increasing the reach in applications requiring higher levels of OGR performance.
Scott Hyland | Project Leader - Coatings, Customer Solutions, Product Innovation, Ingredion
Networking Break
PANEL: Let’s Talk About PFAS – A US and Global Conversation
  • Simona Balan – Senior Environmental Scientist (Specialist), Department of Toxic Substances Control
  • Martin Mulvihill – Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Safer Made
  • Anna Marie Dijk-Van Delden – Technical Service Manager, Avebe U.A
  • More panelists to come!
This panel will explore PFAS, the drivers behind the human health concerns, the regulatory landscape, and the emerging innovations to develop, commercialize, and scale PFAS alternatives.
Session III: Emerging Technologies to Push the Industry Forward
Is Blockchain Technology the Next Step in Sustainability?
Additional Presenter:
  • Tammy Kahn – CEO, BTBlock
Partnering with BTblock, an emerging technology & cybersecurity firm, Domtar has explored Blockchain technology. While what is probably most familiar as the encryption technology that supports digital currency transactions (e.g., Bitcoin) and identity verification, the name comes from its structure, in which digital records or blocks are linked together in a single list or chain. When a new block is added to a blockchain, it is linked to the previous block using a cryptographic hash generated from the contents of the previous block. This ensures the chain is never broken and that each block is permanently recorded. This will be a moderated panel discussion with both Tammy Kahn, CEO of BTblock and Paige Goff, VP of Sustainability for Domtar. Our moderator will ask a series of questions and then open it up to questions from the audience on this new technology's role in the future of supply chain, and when it may be right for your supply chain.

Paige Goff | VP, Sustainability, Domtar
Expanding Consumer Access to Composting by Innovating to Address Contaminates
Additional Presenters:
Jay Sperry – Platform Evangelist, Digimarc

J. Alan McDowall, Sr. Product Stewardship Engineer, Printpack

Food waste is a real problem, not only for social justice and lost economic value, but also because it is a leading contributor to global warming.  Food waste in landfills generate methane, a 30x more intensive greenhouse gas than C02.  There is a global push to reduce methane emissions by removing organics from the landfill and diverting it to a responsible pathway of compost.  Compost operators however have a challenge accepting consumer food waste because it includes more contaminates (non-compostable products) than yard waste.  In this talk, we will look at how Printpack, TIPA, and Digimarc are collaborating to test digital watermarks to sort-in certified compostable materials and eliminate contaminates from the compost stream.
Gary Robinson | Director of Public Affairs, TIPA Compostable Packaging
Closing Remarks
Networking Reception
Registration and Opening Remarks
Registration Open
Opening Remarks
Session IV: Paper Packaging and The Compost Value Proposition
Replacing Plastics through Cooperative Innovation
It has become abundantly clear that the market wants more Sustainable Packaging Solutions.  Both Government and Non-Government Organizations, as well as Retailers and Brand Owners, are clamoring for a greater use of renewable materials, circularity, and composability.  The Sustainability discussion is at a crescendo, and the time to innovate new solutions that meet these needs is NOW.  Leading the way among its peers in both diversity of portfolio and R&D investment, is Stora Enso.  However, their efforts are not done alone.  Cooperation at all levels of the supply chain have been, and will continue to be, critical to their success.  Dustin Schadt will address Stora Enso’s overarching objectives as they relate to Sustainability, and how the efforts are most evident in their Packaging Materials Division.  He will also demonstrate how cooperation has led to success and at the same time challenge listeners to outline their goals, speak a common language, and build partnerships that show sustainable results.
Dustin Schadt | Director of Business Development and Key Account Manager, Stora Enso
PANEL - Compostable Packaging Solutions: Designing with the System in Mind
  • David Fridland – Sustainability Manager, Eco-Products
  • Wendell Simonson – Marketing Director, BPI
  • Susan Thoman – Founder and Managing Director, Compost Manufacturing Alliance
In order for compostable packaging to be successfully collected and processed, there are a lot of things that have to go right. The decisions packaging manufacturers make around materials, certification, labeling, and downstream communication have an enormous impact on the diversion likelihood for their products. This panel discussion will explore the opportunities the packaging supply chain has to design with the organics diversion system in mind, so that foodservice operators, consumers, end-users, and composters have the best chance at using compostable packaging to do what it does best - keep wasted food out of landfills. 
Connecting the Science of the Compost Piles to Compostable Papers
Additional Presenter:
Alex Thomas - Special Projects Lead and University of Wisconsin (Stevens Point) Fellow
Compost Manufacturing Alliance

The Compost Manufacturing Alliance provides the largest network of compost manufacturers in the U.S. working together to bridge the gap between compostable product design and real world compost manufacturing. This session will cover the CMA certification and acceptance process for compostables, the growing national network of facilities accepting CMA certified products, and some of the gaps and challenges being addressed cross functionally with new generation papers and fibers used in foodservice. Specifically highlighted in this session is current work CMA is pioneering with QSRs, academics, compost facility operations experts and product development scientists to address disintegration of paper and fiber items in varying composting processes. CMA is currently conducting a comprehensive field disintegration study on various low/no fluorine papers from a variety of manufactures, with a diverse cross section of treatments, coatings, weights, and types. The goal is to engage a full circle discussion of results from technical experts representing product design, ASTM targets, and composting to cross learn and advance a more effective feedback loop between product makers and the facilities the products are designed for.
Susan Thoman | Founder & Managing Director, Compost Manufacturing Alliance, LLC
Networking Break
Session V: Challenging Plastic Usage with Sustainable Paper Alternatives
New trends in fiber-based packaging and how to develop a market-oriented sustainable packaging solution
Developing fiber-based packaging solutions to achieve circularity means starting from the end of life-scenario in your sales markets. Especially for paper, a highly requested alternative to plastic packaging, not every solution is as sustainable as it seems. We will highlight facts and outlooks about paper recycling, new agricultural residues as a fibre resource, barrier packaging concepts for chocolate and biscuits, active microwave packaging made of fibre material, barriers for 3D fiber packagings, how to replace plastics for electronics and how to develop holistic concepts for worldwide markets. What are the packaging trends of the coming years and how fiber-based packaging can benefit from these trends.
Peter Désilets | Managing Director, Pacoon Sustainability Concepts GmbH
The Seven Holy Grails of Sustainable Packaging
Consumers and brand owners increasingly want packaging that is biobased, biodegradable, recyclable, lightweight, better barrier, low cost, no fluorochemicals. More than 100 million tonnes of plastic packaging are produced each year, little of which is recycled, and various countries and municipalities have banned single use plastic packaging. Brand owners and packaging companies actively seek alternatives to plastic, and paper packaging based on these seven “Holy Grails” is a big part of the solution. This presentation will discuss the development of specialty paper-based solutions derived from disruptive technologies such as recyclable aqueous dispersion coatings and nanocellulose.
Bullet Points:
  • Holy Grails: biobased, biodegradable, recyclable, lightweight, better barrier, low cost, no fluorochemicals
  • Paper-based solutions to replace plastic
  • Disruptive technologies such as recyclable aqueous dispersion coatings and nanocellulose

Jack Miller | Founder and Principal Consultant, Biobased Markets
The Next Generation of Sustainable Barriers
In the packaging sector environmental concerns and consumer’s expectations are raising the demand for renewable and biodegradable sources. Paper and board are excellent packaging materials but their porosity and absorbance need to be overcome with the use of barriers. The novel sustainable barrier starches of Avebe meet PFAS-free the current requirements for barriers in food contact paper and boards, like OGR paper & board or mineral oil barrier board. However, there remains a requirement for a sustainable, renewable and biodegradable barrier material that is sealable as well. This is fulfilled with the next generation of Avebe’s sustainable barriers.
Bullet points:
  • Renewable, biodegradable, compostable and repulpable starch based barrier layer
  • Flexible and transparent adhesive film that can be activated by applying heat and pressure.
  • Adhesive film with excellent barrier properties against e.g. oxygen and Oil & Grease
A Food Grade Starch and the perfect choice for use in dry food packaging concepts
Anna Marie Dijk - van Delden | Technical Service Manager, Royal Avebe
Session VI: The Growing Need to be More Sustainable
PANEL: Brand Commitment to a More Sustainable Future
Kiril Dimitrov – Packaging Expert, Nestle
Dominika Minarovic – Co-Founder, BYBI Beauty
Megan Snowden – Sustainability Manager, Marley Spoon
  • Discuss the movement away from plastics
  • Current and Future sustainability goals – and when company’s plan is to reach them
  • Challenges while trying get to those goals
  • The importance of becoming more sustainable today and for the future
  • Consumer insights and thoughts for the future – i.e. what they want and what we need to do to make it a reality
Sustainability trends driving growth of paper-based consumer packaging
Sustainability and sustainable packaging has become front and center for CPG companies worldwide, over the past few years. Corporations are setting aggressive sustainability goals, as they work towards addressing urgent issues such as climate change and plastic waste/litter in oceans and on land. In addition, we are seeing a tremendous increase in regulatory/legislative pressures globally, such as plastic bans and EPR regulations. Paper-based packaging is becoming a major area of focus and innovation, as a replacement for plastic-based packaging where appropriate. The reason for this focus is the renewable nature of paper, the positive end-of-life story and a favorable perception among consumers. This presentation will discuss opportunities and challenges, as well as some of the recent successful launches of paper-based packaging, particularly high-barrier paper packaging
Sandeep Kulkarni | President, KoolEarth Solutions Inc., USA
From Plastic to Purpose – a movement beyond traditional sustainability
The world has moved forward with the sustainability initiative known as the “War on Plastic Pollution.”  The team at Ahlstrom-Munksjö is taking it a step further – by implementing our “from Plastic to Purpose” movement. “from Plastic to Purpose” goes beyond traditional sustainability.
Zack Leimkuehler | Vice President, Technical Solutions Business Unit and Business R&D, Ahlstrom-Munksjo
Closing Remarks