Manufacturing process

GASCOGNE PAPIER is an integrated producer of natural unbleached Kraft paper.

The pulp and paper plant has been located in Mimizan (South-West of France) since 1925. The plant is located near its natural resource and its raw materials are sourced within 50 km to 60 km from the site.

Kraft manufacturing is a zero-waste process with minimum environmental impact. Cellulose fibres are extracted from wood to create a highly durable paper; all by-products of the process are recycled and regenerated, or used as energy sources.


To produce natural Kraft paper, we use:

  • By-products from forest maintenance: wood from thinning and treetops. Thinning is a natural process and is required for the proper and sustainable maintenance of a cultivated forest. The aim is to remove weak and poorly developed trees to create more space for stronger trees to grow and maintain the forest throughout its development.

  • Sawmill by-products (shavings, strips and edgings): this waste is generated by cutting and processing wood intended for construction or furniture.

  • Bark, stumps and forest remnants: as part of our zero-waste policy, these are used to power the biomass boiler and generate energy.

Wood is made of : 50% water 20% cellulose fibres 30% lignin and bark

“The natural fibre®”: a 100% renewable resource

  • The wood used by Gascogne Papier is sourced entirely from local, sustainably managed forests, and 80% of it is PEFC certified.

  • Some 700,000 tonnes of maritime pine wood are used every year in the form of chips to produce 150,000 tonnes of paper pulp.

PEFC Certification

Did you know?

Paper does NOT destroy forests!
French forests are growing by more than 50,000 ha/year, especially thanks to local paper industry activities.

Paper pulp

A natural unbleached pulp treated with minimum chemicals that retains its durable characteristics.

The paper pulp produced at the Mimizan site is intended exclusively for use in four specialised paper machines.

Cooking of wood chips takes place in 10 digesters.
After cooking, the paper pulp is classified, washed and purified, then stored in towers. Once removed from the storage towers, it is refined, further purified and treated with additives before being turned into paper on four paper machines.


  • 4 paper machines:
    • PM3: natural sack Kraft paper, 70 to 155 g/m²
    • PM4, PM5, PM6: unbleached machine glazed Kraft papers, 32 to 125 g/m²
  • 1 offline coating unit:
    • Surface treatment on 1 or 2 sides of Kraft paper produced at the plant or any other type of paper, 40 to 250 g/m²
    • Custom coatings, developed in-house


For ecological and economic reasons, the plant produces nearly 50% of its electricity needs and virtually 100% of its thermal (steam) energy needs using an energy regeneration loop and manufacturing by-products.

  • 3 boilers, including one black liquor recovery boiler and one biomass boiler

  • 2 turbines that produce nearly 50% of our electricity needs

  • A closed-loop system: recovery of all chemical products

  • A causticisation unit, an evaporator

2016: NEW BIOMASS BOILER for the Mimizan site

  • Use of natural and renewable energies to replace heavy fuel for steam production

  • 98% of thermal energy needs obtained from renewable – not fossil – fuels.

  • Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions

2017: Favourable outcome of CRE5 call for tenders

  • The Mimizan paper plant was selected in March 2017 through the French Ministry of Ecology‘s biomass call for tenders, for the implementation of a cogeneration unit (electricity produced from steam) with electric power of 19.38 MW.

  • This cogeneration project will enable completion of the former biomass boiler investment with 2 latest-generation electricity turbines and equipment to enhance the production site’s energy efficiency.