Containerboard capacity continued to increase, rising 1.9 percent in 2017 to a record 38.9 million tons. Containerboard accounted for 46.2 percent of U.S. paper and paperboard capacity in 2017. Tissue paper capacity is on a long-term expansionary trajectory, approximately in line with U.S. population growth, and rose 0.2 percent in 2017. Four tissue paper machines started production in 2017. Those capacity additions were partly offset by two mill closures that same year. Reflecting displacement from digital media, capacity for newsprint and printing-writing papers continued to decline in 2017. Three mills and six machines producing these grades were permanently closed that year. Click Read More below for additional information.
Appvion Operations, Inc. (“Appvion”), North America’s largest producer of direct thermal receipt paper, is concerned about California’s misguided legislation attempt to limit paper receipts for environmental and health protection. Appvion continues to closely monitor activities in Sacramento.
Paper receipts are the valued choice of retailers and consumers to document sales transactions. Appvion shares the industry’s anxiety over privacy issues and fraud with electronic receipts. “It is concerning that this proposed mandate in California would limit the choice of obtaining a paper receipt for retailers and consumers,” said Appvion’s CEO George W. Wurtz III. Results of a 2017 Toluna U.S. consumer survey indicated that 90 percent of consumers agree that they should have the right to choose how they receive communications (printed or electronic) from financial organizations and service providers.
Regarding Appvion direct thermal products, Appvion led the industry to discontinue the use of BPA in thermal paper formulation in 2006 as a result of toxicology reports and available studies caused growing concerns in the market about the safety of the chemical. In light of the scientific evidence, Appvion felt such action was the responsible thing to do.
In addition, Appvion actively participated in the EPA’s Design For Environment (“DfE”) partnership program. Through DfE, multiple stakeholders – including manufacturers, retailers, public interest groups and regulators – were engaged in evaluating safer alternatives to BPA for use in thermal paper. As part of Appvion’s long commitment to producing safe thermal paper, Appvion welcomed this rigorous safety review of potential BPA substitutes.
Appvion will continue to seek new information and technologies that offer additional opportunities to improve its portfolio of direct thermal products. As part of that effort, Appvion has developed an alternative to the standard point-of-sale receipt paper that is both free of chemical developers and phenols. This new technology relies on a physical change to develop the image. The product is past the prototype stage and will be market tested soon.