Smurfit Kappa moves to offset paper shortage

The global packaging giant is scrambling to buy a high-capacity paper mill in Italy as the pandemic surge in e-commerce hoovers up available supply

Tony Smurfit, chief executive of Smurfit Kappa, told investors on a conference call: ‘We’re in a sold-out position and we don’t have enough paper. We’ve grown much stronger than anticipated. Obviously we need paper and there is very little paper on a global basis.’ Picture:

As the chief executive of one of the world’s largest paper-based packaging companies, Tony Smurfit is faced with a unique problem – he can’t get his hands on enough paper.

Prior to the onset of the Covid-19, the switch away from plastics in favour of more sustainable paper-based packaging and the rise in e-commerce were already considered mega-trends in the packaging industry.

However, the pandemic has accelerated the growth in e-commerce as consumers move away ...