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Rhinelander paper mill idles one paper machine

Story By Lilly Zoller
Local News Published 09/15/2021 12:49PM, Last Updated 09/17/2021 5:53PM
Rhinelander - Local paper mill Ahlstrom-Munksjö is making some changes it hopes will help better serve its customers. The changes won't affect operations from the outside looking in but they will work inside the mill.

"We announced to our team members in Rhinelander that we are in the process of temporarily idling our number eight paper machine and then in the summer months also the supporting assets, which include a super calendar and rewinder," said Addie Teeters, the head of marketing communications at Ahlstrom-Munksjö.

While the machine will be closing down, production won't be slowing. Teeters says it will actually make manufacturing more efficient.

"Really it's an effort to provide better machine efficiency for different specialty product rates that are manufactured all across our Wisconsin plants," said Teeters.

Shutting off the machine while keeping it functional will take a team of engineers and maintenance staff. They are making an effort to ensure the machine can be used again in the future. But once they shut off the machine, their labor will no longer be needed.

"This will cut a certain number of jobs but the actual number of positions affected right now is unknown," said Teeters.

There are still a few open positions that need to be filled before they will know that number for sure. They also have a few workers retiring, which they are hoping will minimize the number of employees they'll need to lay off. 
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