Your demands are being heard. Vendors are altering paper content to keep pace with printing technology changes.
As an in-plant manager, do you take your paper for granted? Do you follow the trends, or stay with what has worked in the past?
If you're an efficient manager, you're always looking for ways to improve. And today's papers can improve the quality of your printing quite a bit. The advent of print-on-demand technology and the increase in color copying and printing have altered the types of paper printers want. Customers now look for brighter, whiter sheets to ensure sufficient contrast with various colors. Manufacturers are working to satisfy these needs.
"The whole area of digital printing, black and white and color...is hot," enthuses Tamara Pope, marketing manager for Avenor.
But printers need more than just better quality. Since in-plants are constantly trying to keep a lid on rising costs, paper has to be able to fit all situations—and all equipment.
According to Pope, the key for manufacturers is recognizing that customers do not want to buy multiple grades to run on different equipment.
"With the rapidly developing range of technologies, it's not easy nor economical to develop every grade to run on all print technologies," she says. "But, you must make sure that multi-purpose grades are available for the most commonly used equipment."
Higher Brightness, Sharper Clarity
The saying, "The more things change the more they stay the same," isn't as true with paper. Take brightness. The overall clarity in a blue-white sheet has increased considerably from 10 years ago according to Vince Phelan, senior manager of Creative Services at Champion International.
"The basic brightness used to be 79 or 80," he comments. "The lowest rating today is about 84, which is almost a 10 percent increase."
Phelan adds that paper vendors have had to accommodate to keep up with changes in equipment. "For ink-jet printers, the paper needs to be able to dry quickly, not allowing the ink to leak through," he says.