Latest News & Features

Mpact’s Felixton Mill unveiled

KZN MEC for Economic Development, Tourism & Environmental Affairs, officially opens Phase 1 of Mpact’s Felixton Mill upgrade

On Tuesday 26 January, KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) MEC for Economic Development, Tourism & Environmental Affairs, Mr Michael Mabuyakhulu unveiled Phase 1 of Mpact’s Felixton Mill R765 million expansion. The upgrade of the paper mill will enhance its product offering, enabling it to produce advanced lightweight containerboard to cater for the increasing demand for packaging weight reduction.

Commenting on the project, Mpact CEO Mr Bruce Strong said; “Capital investment across the Group is critical for us to take advantage of growth prospects in our markets. In the case of the Felixton Mill, the upgrade will increase capacity by 60,000 tonnes to 215,000 tonnes. Notably, the significant investment in the latest paper machine technology and machinery will improve the quality of our paper products; enhance operational efficiencies and the mill’s overall competitiveness in line with global trends.On completion of the project, the mill will no longer utilise bagasse fibre in its products, moving towards fully recycled fibre usage. Environmental benefits of the upgrade also include significant specific reductions in CO2, and the usage of energy, water, and solid waste.”

The Felixton Mill’s upgrade is also expected to contribute to job creation through increased collections of waste paper which will be required by the mill.

Speaking at the unveiling ceremony, MEC Mabuyakhulu said the Felixton Mill upgrade augured well for the province’s plans of using infrastructure projects as a tool for skills transfer and job creation. “It is our view that whatever occurs in the province of KwaZulu-Natal needs to be connected to our to broader strategy of undermining inequality, poverty and unemployment and we believe that this R765 million upgrade to Felixton Mill’s operations will create some much needed job opportunities in the province as well as contribute to a skills transfer to local communities.”

As part of the Felixton Mill upgrade, Mpact secured an 8-year structured loan facility of R200 million with the KZN Growth Fund.

KZN Growth Fund CEO, Mr Siddiq Adam said: “This is a landmark transaction for the KZN Growth Fund and the province. The Fund’s aim is to invest and support sustainable growth projects in the private sector that stimulate job creation, promote B-BBEE and reduce inequality. We are particularly pleased with Mpact’s progress in priority focus areas of B-BBEE and the creation of job opportunities. The investment into the Felixton Mill upgrade demonstrates our confidence in a partnership with Mpact in meeting the province’s developmental goals. 

Situated near Empangeni, Felixton Mill was established in 1953. The mill produces containerboard for local and export corrugated markets utilising waste paper and bagasse, a fibre residue of sugar cane, as primary raw materials. In June 2015, Felixton Mill successfully commissioned Phase 1 of the upgrade, with the completion of a new state-of-the-art recycled fibre (RCF) plant and an upgrade to the paper machine.

The second and final phase of the upgrade is on schedule to be commissioned in 2017.


Christmas knife and fork holder

Christmas - Cutlery holdersThese awesome Christmas knife and fork holders will be a great addition to your Christmas table.

  1. Glue the outside and inside of your toilet roll with red or green paper.
  2. Flatten the roll, and cut a half moon shape out of the front top and bottom of the roll.
  3. Attach a black strip to form the belt. About a 2cm width.
  4. Use silver cardboard and cut a buckle, glue onto belt.
  5. Cut our black dots about half a cm in diameter to form the buttons and glue onto the body.


Christmas door wreath

Christmas wreath What a great way to upcycle your various cardboard inners.

  1. Cut various sizes of cardboard inners at 4cm width.
  2. Glue them together to form your desired wreath.
  3. Spray paint with gold spray paint.
  4. Glue Christmas tree ball decoration in larger inners.
  5. Attach chain or thick string to make a hanger.  You can use knobs as per the photo, or use screw hooks.
  6. Hang on your door for all to see.


Inspiration: This idea was made with PVC pipes on

COP21: Assessing Transparency and Ambition in the Land use and Forestry sector

On 1 December 2015, Paulo Canaveira of Terraprima delivered a presentation as part of the ICFPA‘s COP21 side event, Assessing Transparency and Ambition in the Land use and Forestry sector.

The presentation - Overview of land use and forestry sector within INDCs* – can be found here: Paulo Canaveira.

*Intended Nationally Determined Contributions


Global Forest and Paper Industry Releases Policy Statement on Climate Change

Plantations are vital for the sequestration of carbon dioxide. (Photo: Sappi)

Plantations are vital for the sequestration of carbon dioxide. (Photo: Sappi)

Johannesburg – The International Council of Forest and Paper Associations (ICFPA) has released its statement on climate change as part of its involvement in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change meeting (COP21) in Paris, France. The statement presents the contributions of forests and the forest products industry to the mitigation of global climate change and calls on governments to recognize these contributions. The full statement is available at: Continue reading

Namakwa Recycling Cooperative takes root

Community of Springbok is the latest to benefit from recycling training course  provided by PRASA. 

Thanks to the combined efforts of the Paper Recycling Association of South Africa (PRASA) and local entrepreneur Cecil Barends, the recovery of recyclables is gaining momentum in Springbok, a town situated in the heart of the Northern Cape’s Namaqualand spring-flower country. Continue reading

Paper recycling. Simplified.

PRASA shares the ‘golden rules’ for paper recycling.

The Paper Recycling Association of South Africa (PRASA) calls on all South Africans – from schoolchildren to pensioners – to do their bit by recycling paper products at school, home and work for drop-off at local recycling depots or gathering by collectors who earn a living by selling it back to mills. Continue reading

Call for project participation from South African universities

The Paper Manufacturers Association of South Africa’s Process Research Unit invites South African universities to tender project proposals for research work that will advance the development of new skills and commercial opportunities in the pulp and paper industry.

Proposals should relate to the following: 

  • The extraction and modification of hemicelluloses from mill liquors. This should include the development of processes to recover, process and test the economic viability of products.
  • Nanocellulose production from waste streams (typically paper machine sludge) and other biomass feedstocks available.
  • The development of pyrolysis processes to recover liquid and solid products for beneficiation for use in the chemical and fuel sectors.
  • The recovery of liquid fuels/chemicals using fermentation-type processes suitable for the processing of liquid waste streams for the manufacture and recovery of alcohols and bio-plastics.

No more than three proposals from each institution will be considered.

Please include:

  • Overall project scope, clearly defined deliverables and motivation.
  • Innovation and uniqueness.
  • Time-line with clearly defined target dates and intermediate hold points.
  • Overall cost and expected cash flow over project life.
  • Resources required, with particular emphasis on up-skilling human resources, including number of masters and/or doctorates that could be developed.
  • Potential for entrepreneurial development and community upliftment.

Email:              patti.webster [at] pamsa [dot co dot za]

Queries:           011 803 5063

Closing date:   Monday, 5 October 2015

Discover the treasure in your trash

Screenshot 2015-09-08 13.53.00Make a difference and recycle this September

Between September 14 and 19, we celebrate Clean-up South Africa and Recycle Week to encourage citizens countrywide to recycle as a means of preventing ‘treasured trash’ from taking up precious space in landfills and extending its usable life as a new product.

Organisations like the Paper Recycling Association of South Africa (PRASA) are working towards a ‘recycling-minded’ society by teaching ordinary people how they can make an extraordinary difference – with everyday items.

Separating paper and cardboard products from home, school and office waste and keeping it aside for conversion into other products has many benefits, both for the environment and the people who make a living by collecting recyclables and selling them on to buy-back centres and paper manufacturers,” says PRASA operations director Ursula Henneberry.


The paper products we come into daily contact with – ranging from office paper and newspapers, medicine boxes and magazines, juice and milk cartons to cardboard cores from toilet rolls – can all be recycled.

They are also completely renewable because, at some point, their fibre would have come from sustainably and responsibly farmed trees that are planted, grown, harvested and replanted in cycles.

Recycling also keeps the carbon originally stored in the wood fibre of trees locked in paper products and out of the atmosphere for longer.

Unfortunately large quantities of paper still end up in landfills, which are rapidly running out of space, and add to greenhouse gas emissions when paper decomposes with other waste.

“During 2014, 64% of recoverable paper was recycled, 2% more than in 2013 and 5% more than in 2012,” says Henneberry. “For every tonne of paper recycled, up to three cubic metres of landfill space is saved – land that could be better used for housing, agriculture and infrastructure. During 2014, South Africans recycled 1.1 million tonnes, enough to fill 1,276 Olympic-sized swimming pools.”

But we need to do more. It is estimated that only 5% of households recycle paper.

PRASA advises that householders keep recyclables aside for an informal collector who walks your neighbourhood every week. “This increases the quality of the recyclables, allowing the collector to earn a little more.”


“In a country with high unemployment rates and accompanying poverty, paper recycling is becoming a source of revenue for a growing number of people. An estimated 35,000 people put food on their tables by walking the streets to collect ‘waste’ in return for cash or work for larger companies to recover, sort and weigh recyclables for conversion into usable and commercially viable products.

The pulp and paper manufacturing industry is a key sector in the South African economy. Importantly, it employs a workforce of more than 150,000 people across the value chain – from forestry, to pulp and paper manufacturing to informal collectors. These people in turn collectively feed, clothe and school around 900,000 dependants.

“Companies that produce paper products run major mills specifically designed to turn today’s phonebooks, magazines, notepads, company minutes, milk cartons and cereal boxes into tomorrow’s egg containers, corrugated boxes and board, newspapers and tissue products,” states Henneberry.

“Some 65% of recovered paper is used as fibre, without which these mills would stand idle, unable to manufacture the pulp used to produce materials for products manufactured in South Africa and exported around the world.”

You can get involved by separating all kinds of refuse, starting with paper and moving on to plastics, glass and cans.

Paper products you can recycle:

  • all office paper
  • coloured paper
  • newspaper, magazines (even glossy ones)
  • catalogues, phonebooks
  • direct marketing leaflets
  • cardboard packaging of all kinds, shapes and sizes – boxes used for moving; electronics, shoes, gifts and cereal
  • paper towel and toilet paper cores
  • food packaging (unwaxed only please)
  • shredded paper (in plastic bag to minimize blow-away)
  • milk, juice and liquid cartons (should be empty)
  • books: all soft cover, hard or plastic covers should be ripped off
  • pizza boxes (food and wax paper removed)
  • brown paper bags

Remember, paper should be separated from wet waste so it does not get contaminated.

Paper products you shouldn’t recycle

  • Tissue paper and paper towel
  • Wax paper
  • Used cement and dog food bags
  • Disposable nappies
  • Plastic lined papers
  • Foil lined papers


  • Visit for programmes in your area.
    • Enrol in a free kerbside collection programme.
    • Find a drop-off centre near your home or office, usually at local shopping centres.
  • Check with local community centres, places of worship or schools if they have a paper recycling programme from which they benefit financially.
  • Contract the services of a small recycling business.

Clean-up SA and Recycle Week takes place between September 14 and 18, and National Recycling Day is celebrated on Friday, September 18. International Coastal Clean-up Day takes place on Saturday, 19 September.

Screenshot 2015-08-27 13.53.57