Collaboration and partnerships

We actively develop new solutions to speed up the circular transition and promote the sustainable use of renewable materials. But we cannot do it all on our own. We are always looking for partners to co-create circular innovations and find new ways of utilising non-core patents and the industrial internet.


Partnerships add value and flexibility

We are a shareholder of CLIC Innovation, a Finnish open innovation cluster focusing on bioeconomy, circular economy and energy systems, and thus, supporting UPM's internal R&D.

We are among the founding members of the European Joint Undertaking on Bio-based Industries (BBI JU). This Public Private Partnership (PPP) aims to spur investment and create a competitive market for bio-based products and materials that are sourced locally. 

We are also a member of 4evergreen, a cross-industry alliance which fosters synergies among brand owners and industry’s leading companies to promote low-carbon and circular fiber-based packaging. The alliance brings together the entire value  chain enabling collaboration and best practice sharing among member companies. Its goal is to increase the recycling rate of fibre-based packaging to 90% by 2030. 4evergreen operates under the Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI). Read more here: Paper packaging going fully circular.

Some examples of collaboration projects

Together with Pohjolan Voima we are participating in UUMA4 program that aims to enhance the utilisation of secondary raw materials in earth construction applications in Finland.

We are also involved in the ERDF-funded SOMA project led by JAMK University of Applied Sciences. The project focuses on Additive Manufacturing (AM) of concrete-like material (geopolymer). Various industrial side steams, e.g. bio-based fly ash and green liquor dregs from pulp production will be used as raw materials instead of conventional concrete. The project tests the 3D printing of various materials and introduces the possibilities of 3D printing in the construction industry.

We are targeting to use only recycled nutrients in our own effluent treatment plants by 2030. One collaboration project supporting this target is the HSY (Helsinki Region Environmental Services) lead RAHI project. The aim of this project is to maximize the phosphorus recovery from municipal wastewater treatment plant sludges. This enriched sludge will be tested in a UPM paper mill’s wastewater treatment plant as recycled phosphorus source.


UPM supported bio-based and circular economy startups at Kasvu Open


Baltic Sea Action Group (BSAG)

As a supporter of the Baltic Sea Action Group, UPM has pledged to use only recycled nutrients at our biological wastewater treatment plants by 2030.  By recycling nutrients we contribute to preserving and improving the condition of both the Baltic Sea and other bodies of water.

Our target is to source recycled nutrients locally. This helps to reduce local eutrophication while also promoting the circular economy. To achieve our target, we collaborate with agricultural and industrial biogas plant operators and municipal wastewater treatment plants. So far, we have made good progress: in 2020, already 28 per cent of all nutrients used by UPM were recycled.

Read more:

Our mill sites are full of great circular economy stories which benefit the society at a larger scale


The giant of Rauma


UPM Kaukas leads the way in promoting the circular economy


UPM Specialty Papers helps enhance circular economy in self-adhesive label industry


UPM joins the Renewable Carbon Initiative to change the foundation of chemical industry