Explore innovation in depth

Research and development

R&D is focused on helping to achieve our ambitious but achievable strategy of extracting more value from each tree and leveraging the changing dynamics between the environment, consumers and the products they require.

Our R&D initiatives focus on optimising our equipment and forestry assets, driving cost competitiveness and cost reduction, and consolidating and growing our position – and that of our customers – in our targeted markets segments. Our overarching aim is to collaborate with our stakeholders to make all processes and materials more sustainable.

Technology centres

Technology centres in each region cover each section of the value chain and are staffed by technicians, engineers and scientists whose goals are to share best practices and new findings from new customers, discover and implement new products, optimise current product quality, improve product cost and work closely with our partners.

Our research team is part of a global Sappi network where collaboration between the regions ensures synergies and speed of implementation.


Sappi Europe

Sappi Europe Technology Centre

Gratkorn (Austria) and Maastricht (The Netherlands) Centres of Excellence

  • Nanocellulose
  • Papermaking processes

Wilton R&D Centre (United Kingdom)

  • Furfural
  • Lignin
  • Xylose


Sappi North America

Sappi North America Technology Centre

Westbrook Centre of Excellence (United States)

  • Coated woodfree papers
  • Packaging and speciality papers
  • Casting and release paper development


Sappi Southern Africa

Forestry Research Centre

Forestry Research Centre (Tweedie, South Africa)

  • Tree breeding 
  • Propagation techniques 
  • Silviculture

Sappi Technology Centre

Sappi Technology Centre (Pretoria, South Africa)

  • Fibre processing 
  • Paper science 
  • Chemical sciences 
  • Environmental sciences

Sappi Dissolving Pulp Centre of Excellence

Sappi Dissolving Pulp Centre of Excellence (Umkomaas, South Africa)

  • Applications testing 
  • Fundamental cellulose properties