St. Croix Tissue Going Strong After First Year

By Lura Jackson

 

Just over a year ago, Baileyville was the site of an impressive gathering of politicians, administrators, and workers as the culmination of a $120 million project was formally realized. St. Croix Tissue has been operating every day since that point, and from an industry standpoint, the first year of operations has been a success. 

St. Croix Tissue is the second business in Baileyville under the helm of International Grand Investment Corp. [IGIC], with the first being Woodland Pulp. The tissue side of the manufacturing business was seen as a way to secure production into the future, prompting IGIC to move forward with investing in the project. One of the major costs was the acquisition of two LDC (Light, Dry, Crepe) machines, granting a combined total capacity of producing 120,000 metric tons of tissue every year. Approximately one million man hours were involved in installing the machines and creating the associating housing facility. Now that the tissue machines are up and running, St. Croix Tissue employs roughly 80 individuals to keep its operations going smoothly. 

“We have achieved our goals up to this point in our development as we have been operating within 95 percent of the design capacity in recent months,” said Marty Richard, General Manager of St. Croix Tissue. “We are very pleased with this performance and the contribution that all of our team members have made.”

The capability of St. Croix Tissue and its dedicated staff has already been noticed by the industry, resulting in high demand. “Our machines are oversold and we have established an early reputation in the industry of providing a high-quality product to our customers,” Richard said. “We have established a very solid customer base with opportunities to increase our production volume in the future.”

Overall, Richard heralds the first year as a success that has provided ample learning opportunities. “Our first year has been challenging, yet rewarding, and we have overcome many hurdles as everyone in the organization has learned valuable new skills to contribute to the business.” Perhaps most importantly, Richard points out the company has minimized worker injuries as a result of its dedication to safety protocol. “In fact, our operations recently passed the one year mark without any recordable injuries.”

There aren’t many manufacturing jobs in Washington County, but those in the field can rest easy knowing that St. Croix Tissue is proceeding as anticipated. “The future is very promising for the mill,” Richard concluded.