Built for sustainability

One company that has unfailingly put sustainability at the core of its entire business is pulp and paper manufacturer Double A.

Double A is a leader in environmental, sustainable and community practices with numerous globally-recognised credentials to its name. Since the company was founded in 1991 in Thailand, its ethos has been to design a business from the ground up that not only helps protect the environment and gives back to the community, but does so while manufacturing premium grade paper. 

With its global reach, Double A has a production capacity of around one million tonnes of writing and copy paper annually. 

Double A is a firm believer that environmental practices and economic growth go hand in hand and its entire philosophy is based on the principles of sustainable business development. To achieve this, Double A focuses on three core pillars of sustainability: environmental, social and economic responsibilities. 

Paper from khan-na (PFKN)

A unique Asian solution to sustainable fibre sourcing from paper trees planted on vacant space between rice paddies – known as KHAN-NA – turns cultivating trees for paper into an agricultural resource. The initiative has proven that paper making can be environmentally sustainable, while encouraging community participation and enabling a continuous and secure livelihood for 1.5 million Thai farmers.

The natural hybrid species of fast-growing trees used have been developed by Double A over 25 years of research. The trees have short roots for low water consumption and each tree can be harvested three times. 

The PFKN programme offers many benefits to the Thai farmers, namely providing a second income without having to change their main crop or clear any cultivated land. In addition, Double A supports its farmers by providing training. It also issues a buy-back contract for the seedlings, which in turn reduces debt risks for the farmers and guarantees future income. 

A survey undertaken by the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) and Chulalongkorn University revealed that the PFKN programme made farmers feel socially and economically empowered. Double A Paper-Tree farmers typically earn around $1,000 per family after the three-year maturity period. The initiative also helps the preservation of the world’s natural forests, and Double A’s 400 million paper trees eliminate 6.7 million tonnes of CO2 emissions on an annual basis. 

Cradle to grave

Double A’s environmentally-friendly milling operations include ‘cradle to the mill gate’ life cycle assessments and internationally-recognised certifications, along with advanced technology to ensure it adheres to sustainable pulp and paper manufacturing. 

Waste from the pulp manufacturing process has always been a major environmental concern, but Double A operates a ‘No Waste is Wasted’ policy whereby tree bark, oversized woodchips, lignin and black liquor from the production process becomes biomass fuel. This generates 100 megawatts of electricity, enough to power the mill. Excess power is subsequently sold to the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) to power around 400,000 local households. 

Waste not want not

Double A has one of the most efficient water consumptions in the industry, thanks to numerous innovations including its own purpose-built reservoir, named Emerald Lake. It has a capacity of 35 million cubic metres. The reservoir collects rainwater all year round providing 100% of the water requirements for Double A’s mill.

During the washing process, wash press technology is used to squeeze water from wet pulp and reused, enabling the mill to consume around one tenth of the industry average. A state-of-the-art biological treatment system for contaminated water known as a ‘bacteria digestion process’ is employed allowing treated water to irrigate the vegetation surrounding the mill, and ensuring that no waste water reaches natural waterways. 

Double A  joins PEFC

The world’s largest forest certification system, the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), has accepted Double A as an International Stakeholder member.

PEFC applauded Double A’s work with smallholders in Thailand through its Paper from KHAN-NA project and the company’s role in the development of a Thai national forest certification system. 

The KHAN-NA agroforestry programme is so unique and innovative that there is currently no suitable framework to attain forest certification. However, Double A in conjunction with the PEFC, is now developing such a scheme that will include trees outside forest-based agroforestry. This, in turn, will enable the Thai farmers to access the certified wood market.

Double A credentials

  • Prime Minister’s Award for Industrial Excellence in Environmental Conservation
  • ISO 14001 – Environmental Management Standards
  • ISO 9001 – Quality Management Standards
  • ISO 14040 Standards – Life Cycle Assessment
  • ISO 9184 Fibre Furnish Analysis Standards
  • Asian Corporate Social Responsibility Award for Poverty Alleviation
  • Thailand Business Council for Sustainable Development – Green Meetings Award
  • Double A Alizay Mill is an FSC-certified mill

Premier grade

The Premier Paper Group, the UK’s largest independent paper merchant, is Double A’s main stockist. Double A is also available through the Aims Group, EVO Group and Spicers-OfficeTeam.

The product assortment includes 70, 75, 80, 90 & 100 gsm weights in both A4 and A3 sizes from the Double A Business, Premium, Colorprint, and Presentation paper range. 

High-quality fibre content – 30 million fibres per gram – enables the paper to be used double-sided and it can be stored for long periods due to its acid-free content. The paper is ideal for high-speed machines thanks to its smoothness allowing for good toner transfer, printing sharpness and bright whiteness.  

The paper is produced and manufactured at the Alizay pulp and paper mill facility in northern France.

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