Pulp and paper company Double A has entered the dissolving pulp market in response to significant growth in the market and the global demand in many enterprises. Double A (1991) Public Company Limited, is a fully integrated pulp and paper mill. Located in Thailand’s central plains in the province of Prachinburi, the mill began operating in 1995 and has an annual capacity of 600,000 tonnes of pulp and 600,000 tonnes of paper.

Double A has invested US$6.1 million to upgrade its pulp production line in Thailand to supply the world’s textile industry with high quality and sustainable raw material from KHAN-NA.

The demand for high-purity cellulose, also known as dissolving pulp, has substantially increased during the last few years. The growing demand for dissolving pulp in the market is attributed to a consistent growth of regenerated cellulose fibre production, largely initiated by an increasing demand in China and other Asian countries. In 2012, global demand for dissolving pulp, a viable alternative for cotton, has reached 6mt (million tonnes). The favourable trend is expected to continue in the next two years with an annual growth rate of 9%. Global demand is projected at 6.9mt in 2014 and thus dissolving pulp will prevail during the next decade.

Dissolving pulp, a bleached wood pulp with a high cellulose content of more than 90%, is a key material used to manufacture viscose staple fibre (VSF) or rayon. More than 80% of the world’s dissolving pulp is converted to viscose rayon fibre, which is used in dresses, jackets, suits, socks, neckties and other garments.

Asia, specifically China, will continue to be the world’s biggest market for dissolving pulp as a viable substitute for cotton with special applications in rayon fibre for the textile industry. This is due to the limited domestic supply of fibre, increased production of garments and the short supply of cotton.

China is the world’s largest production base of viscose fibre. In 2012, 60% of world’s total viscose fibre output was produced by China. Production is expected to grow by 10% therefore demand for dissolving pulp will also rise, making China a key market to Double A.

Double A has invested US$6.1 million to upgrade its pulp production line in Thailand using modern technology from Finland. The machine will commence commercial production at the beginning of 2014 with 175,000 tonnes annual capacity. The first 100,000 tonnes output will be exported to China.

Double A’s dissolving pulp is sourced from sustainable Paper Tree from KHAN-NA, its proprietary sustainable fibre-sourcing programme. Paper from KHAN-NA reduces carbon dioxide emissions and improves rice farmer’s income.