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Subtle changes bring cost savings

Intelligent production choices can increase print profitability.

By Julian Townsend

Subtle changes bring cost savings

If headlines are to be believed, the paper and print industry is on its deathbed, and nobody will publish another magazine ever again due to the impact of the pandemic. Of course, there are always two sides to every story, and the fact is that there are opportunities for the printed word in the post-pandemic world.

Currently, each of the input costs in paper, such as raw materials, commodities and logistics, has been subject to cost inflation – the price of pulp has risen by over 60% in less than a year! Publishers have had to endure increasing pressures for a number of years now and they cannot be expected to absorb ever-increasing production costs. Never a better time to explore new opportunities to breathe new life into magazines.

Paper consumption is predominately based around weight – be it production, yield or distribution, but paper grades also provide different characteristics and so a considered choice may help to mitigate the effect of increased costs.

For example, by selecting an appropriate 75gsm grade over an existing 80gsm, you could net a 6.25% advantage and possibly impact positively on the cost of distribution. Similarly, by compromising on the brightness levels of your paper, you could benefit by as much as a 10% cost saving. These are just some subtle changes that would have little to no effect on customer perception of your finished product.

Along with paper selection, the current situation would suggest you keep a check on supply continuity. Volatility always brings risks to the supply chain and we are all too aware of paper capacity reductions due to mill closures and machine adaptations for paper-fibre based packaging and hygiene products. The ability to have a complete choice with respect to manufacturers and grades has always been important, but now even more than ever.

Another growing and important consideration for print is sustainability. Paper is an inherently sustainable product. It’s made from a natural and renewable resource (trees) and it can be recycled many times over. The carbon footprint of paper is very measurable too, and this allows you to validly offset it via trusted schemes such as the World Land Trust’s Carbon Balanced Paper scheme – something you can publicise proudly with logos and statements within your magazine. In the five years since 2016, Denmaur has carbon balanced over 50,000 tonnes of its customers’ paper for them.

As we navigate through what are difficult times, it is important to make use of the expertise and guidance that relates to a major cost component of your magazine production. This may come in the form of an independent paper management supplier, who will be able to steer you towards the right opportunities.

Never a better time to explore new opportunities to breathe new life into magazines.

About Denmaur Paper Media

Denmaur has been one of the established names in the print and publishing sectors since 1983. Today, Denmaur Paper Media has become one of the leading specialist paper suppliers in the UK, offering a comprehensive range of innovative and sustainable products to suit traditional and modern print processes.


Twitter: @DenmaurPaper


This article is part of our ‘Print Post-Pandemic’ special feature, looking at the future of print as we emerge from lockdown. The feature includes the following articles by leading publishers and suppliers:

A major part of the mix, by Mark Allen

Rewards extended dwell time, by Sally Hampton

Shout it loud: print is safe!, by Chris Horn

Targeted distribution is key, by Stephanie Hyde

New metrics needed, by Keiron Jefferies

Sustainability: consumers demanding more, by Sarah Lesting

We need to change the way we operate, by Nicola Murphy

Reasons for (justifiable) optimism, by Tim Robinson

Luxury is physical, by Piers Russell-Cobb

Positive outlook, by Adam Sherman

Subtle changes bring cost savings, by Julian Townsend

Turning ‘expensive’ into ‘premium’, by Neil Wass

This article was first published in InPublishing magazine. If you would like to be added to the free mailing list, please register here.