The great
white way

Close-up of finished reels of Arena paper in Fedrigoni’s Verona mill in Italy.

Water cascades down the stream that flows past Fedrigoni’s Varone mill at the northern end of Lake Garda, Italy.

Making sure that the Rough and Bulk textures were consistent – regardless of which mill they came from – required careful coordination.

This wide view shows the Verona paper mill seen from a canal path near the centre of the Italian city. This site dates back to 1888.

Fedrigoni product manager Marta Franceschi (right) with junior product manager Alice Marchetti in front of several reels of Arena at the Verona mill.

Fedrigoni laboratory manager Roberto Simonini in the Varone mill’s sample room. Files on the shelves record every recent production run from the mill.

Detail of a reel of 80 g/m2 Arena Extra White Smooth in the Verona mill.

Valentina Marino, one of the laboratory team in the Verona mill, examines a sample of Arena that has just come off the run.

Making paper. At the ‘wet end’ of the Varone mill, different kinds of dry pulp are mixed together with water to make the pulp stock, which is stirred vigorously by the machine.

Roberto Simonini inspects the Varone machine with a torch as the pulp mass goes through the first roller to be heated.

The paper machine uses heat and pressure to take water out of the wet pulp. The detail shows a point at which the material on the roller starts to become recognisable as paper

Three workers (Daniele Madella, Daniele Rovizzi and Roberto Leoni) on one of the Varone papermaking machines. During the manufacturing run, they control the machinery from within a soundproofed booth.

As the paper comes out of the ovens at the Varone mill, production assistant Alessandro Pederzolli inspects the paper.

The spindles around which the paper is wound have been in use for many years. The handles at each end are essential for manoeuvring the huge reels around the mill.

Production manager Angelo Colucci inside the paper-making machine at Verona.

In the Verona mill, Erik Pagani carries out a visual spot check, examining the structure of the paper fibres over a light box to make sure they are correctly aligned. A papermaking machine, stretching back to the ‘wet’ end of the room can be seen behind him.

At the Verona mill, a finished roll of paper is unrolled and fed into a machine that will slice it into sheets.

Detail of the cutting machine at the Verona mill. A blade cuts paper into the required sheet sizes and grain directions. In 2019, Varone produced approximately 150 tonnes per day (with 2 paper machines), Verona around 225 tonnes per day (2 machines) and Pioraco around 110 tonnes per day (1 machine).