Breathing new life into one of Maine’s oldest industries
MTAF 2.0 Award | $4,000,000
Increase in annual paper production
Ever since colonial settlers harvested white pine to build ship masts for the British Royal Navy, generations of Mainers have earned their living from the state’s expansive forest. But as global competition intensified in recent decades, paper mills around Maine struggled to keep up—including Verso’s Androscoggin Mill in Jay.
In 2017 Verso was forced to cut production at Androscoggin and—after 50+ years of operation—shut down the No. 3 paper machine. For many mills this would mark the beginning of the end. But for Verso, it was the beginning of something new.
Teaming with MTI, Verso applied for—and was awarded—a MTAF 2.0 grant. This $4 million in funding supplemented Verso’s own $13 million investment for upgrading and converting the No. 3 machine to produce containerboard. By entering this emerging and high-demand segment of the market, Verso expects to double its production and add 120 new jobs.
The transformation taking place in Jay is bringing jobs back to the state and supporting the economy in Franklin County. It’s also serving as a blueprint for other mills across Maine as they look to rebuild their relevance in a competitive global market.