News: Step Forward Paper™

A turning point in protecting forests

Straw-based copy paper with 80 per cent less forest fibre than traditional paper is now widely available to Canadian consumers, small businesses and home offices at Staples Canada.

The paper is designed and produced by the entrepreneurial Winnipeg-based company Prairie Pulp & Paper Inc. It contains 80 per cent straw from leftover by-product of harvested wheat crops and 20 per cent Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) certified wood fibre. Aptly marketed under the brand name Step Forward Paper™, it is a step forward in protecting forests and supporting farmers with new revenue streams, and FSC certified by the Rainforest Alliance.

“Paper made from leftover straw produces high quality and performance that compares with other copy and printer papers,” said Pete Gibel, Vice President of Merchandising at Staples Canada. “It’s an easy and cost-effective way for consumers and small businesses to conserve our world’s forests without sacrificing quality.”

Step Forward Paper™ is accessible to consumers exclusively through Staples stores across Canada and online at thanks to the support of Canada’s leading national distributor Unisource Canada, which teamed up with Staples Canada to make it happen.

Jeff Golfman, Prairie Pulp & Paper Inc. President, explained, “Step Forward Paper™ is the first paper of its kind to hit shelves in North America, and the first step toward meeting more of our paper needs from straw instead of ancient forests.” The paper is presently made at a facility in India. “Our goal is to establish a market that will support our plans to build a new state-of-the-art facility in the Canadian prairies in Manitoba, which will in turn enable us to produce this straw paper with an even smaller footprint,” said Golfman.


Prairie Pulp & Paper Inc. is working in partnership with Canopy, the award winning not-for- profit environmental organization that is collaborating with large paper customers to protect forests by developing the North American straw paper industry. Canopy’s highly successful book (Margaret Atwood) and magazine (Canadian Geographic) straw paper trials have already established momentum and appetite for straw paper products.

“Our market survey continues to quantify a clear and growing demand from large paper customers for paper made from leftover straw,” said Amanda Carr, Canopy’s Campaign Director. “Now we’re excited because shoppers like you and I can pick up Step Forward Paper™ and support a straw paper industry in North America, a key to protecting our endangered ancient forests,” noted Carr.

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