WestRock to shut down North Charleston paper mill

The company that operates the paper mill in North Charleston has announced it will permanently shut down that plant
Published: May. 2, 2023 at 6:35 PM EDT|Updated: May. 2, 2023 at 11:11 PM EDT
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NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The company that operates the paper mill in North Charleston has announced it will permanently shut down that plant.

WestRock Company says it will cease operations at the Virginia Avenue plant, which employs approximately 500 people, on Aug. 31.

“WestRock and its predecessor companies have had a long history in the region operating the North Charleston mill, and the contributions of the team members over the years have been greatly appreciated,” WestRock CEO David B. Sewell said. “The decision to close a facility and impact the lives of our team members is never easy, and we are committed to assisting our North Charleston team with exploring roles at other WestRock locations and outplacement assistance.”

In a news release, the company cited high operating costs and the need for significant capital investment as the determining factors in the decision to close the mill.

The plant produces containerboard, uncoated kraft paper, and unbleached saturating kraft paper, with a combined annual capacity of 550,000 tons.

Containerboard and uncoated kraft currently produced at the mill will be manufactured at other WestRock facilities. The Company intends to exit the unbleached saturating kraft paper business when the mill shutdown is completed.

The roughly 500 employees will receive severance and outplacement assistance in accordance with WestRock policy and labor union agreements, the release states.