Record net sales of technical products of $185.6 million were 28% higher than the prior year period. Excluding the effects of Itasa and the plant closure, net sales increased by 6%. Fine Papers and Packaging net sales of $99.2 million, up 21% year-on-year, with strong organic growth across all categories.
“We started 2022 in a strong position, with record sales supported by strong demand in our filtration, specialty coatings, packaging and industrial solutions growth platforms. We have taken an aggressive commercial approach to drive prices, improve the mix and ensure continuity of supply for our customers”, says Julie Schertell, Managing Director. “Our pricing metrics have now started to offset input costs, with benefits expected to continue to grow over the course of the year. Our operational excellence program also provides value to help offset some of the macro challenges. Manufacturing costs improved sequentially throughout the quarter, but still remain above our historical levels due to the Brownville fire and inefficiencies related to supply chain challenges and new labor- Importantly, despite these short-term headwinds, we expect to see a gradual improvement in our operating rates over the coming quarters.
Schertell adds, “As we head into the second quarter, we continue to implement aggressive actions to offset rising raw material, energy and chemical costs. We announced additional pricing initiatives that will take effect in the second quarter, as well as R&D reformulations that will allow us to use different chemistries for our products, offsetting some of the supply and chemical shortages in the market. We are also pleased that our acquisition and expansion into the non-stick coatings market has demonstrated a continued pace of record performance ahead of our expectations. Our strategy is clear and we are sticking to the essential elements of our plan. »