Press release Feb 7, 2023
Metsä Group’s innovation company Metsä Spring was the lead investor in Fiberwood’s financing round. Part of the funding raised is loan financing from Business Finland.
Fiberwood, a Finnish materials technology company, uses Metsä Group’s side streams to create 100% wood and natural fibre-based insulation boards and packaging materials as alternatives to rock wool, glass wool and polystyrene. The company has developed the technology and production process to turn raw materials from forest mechanical by-products into high-value, fully bio-based insulation boards and packaging materials.
“We are contributing to the goal of sustainable development by using the side streams, producing higher value-added products in an energy-efficient way and boosting wood construction. We are grateful to our investors for their belief in the potential of our products and for the opportunity to use Metsä Group’s forest industry side streams as raw material,” says Tage Johansson, CEO of Fiberwood.
The potential market for the product is huge, as the global market for building materials is estimated to be worth around EUR 25 billion. The innovation will also enable significant energy savings, as around 40% of energy use in buildings is for heating.
“With the funding received, we will build a continuous pilot line to validate the technological solutions for a production-scale line, as there are no commercially available machines and processes to manufacture our products. Our production process based on foam technology is energy-efficient and environmentally friendly due to, among other things, low and closed water consumption,” says Karita Kinnunen-Raudaskoski, Fiberwood’s CTO.
In addition to insulation material, Fiberwood’s technology can be used to produce an environmentally friendly and sustainable alternative to expanded polystyrene plastic, or styrofoam. Fiberwood’s packaging cushions are fully degradable and recyclable. Their insulating properties also make them suitable for hot/cold chain packaging needs.
With the construction sector accounting for around 40% of global carbon emissions, innovations such as the technology developed by Fiberwood are much-needed ways to reduce consumption and promote fully wood-based construction. Fiberwood’s own production uses energy extremely efficiently, making the entire production process low-carbon. According to Fiberwood, wood construction in the EU is expected to grow from 10% to 30% by 2050.
“Fiberwood has developed a technology that uses renewable raw materials sourced from sustainable forest sources. Metsä Group wants to support the most efficient use of side streams. The world needs new innovations to support the circular economy, and this is exactly the kind of innovation we want to support,” says Erik Kolehmainen, VP of Corporate Venture at Metsä Spring.