The short answer is that supply has dropped below the current demands. However, there are many factors influencing this, so we’ll cover the main points and answer some common questions in this blog and video.
Why is there a paper shortage?
Major paper manufacturer UPM has had strikes at its 4 Finnish mills since 1st Jan 2022 which still aren’t resolved. Combined, they have the capacity to produce around 190,000 tonnes per month, so in the first quarter of 2022 that’s well over half a million tonnes out the equation
Suppliers using Russian paper mills or buying Russian pulp are no longer doing so due to the current crisis in Ukraine, meaning other mills have become inundated with orders and which has increased their lead times
Over the pandemic some mills switched to make packaging for the growing online shopping markets meaning there are fewer mills producing paper than there were before the pandemic started
Why are prices rising?
The situation in Ukraine has influenced all commodity prices, with the overall commodity market increasing 38% in the first 3 months of 2022 (which affects pulp prices)
Increased energy prices directly impact paper production costs
Fuel and logistic increases make it more expensive to transport paper into the UK and also from us to you
Mills are focusing on making their higher quality brands before their budget options, meaning a lot of budget brands and white box have been temporarily replaced with more expensive alternatives
Why are some suppliers cheaper than Springfield?
Some paper merchants quote for products they don’t have in stock. Our quotes are only for products we have in stock
If companies have old stocks of paper, their prices may be based off pre-increase costs, grab it while you can but be aware that once it’s gone, it’s gone!