Correct container Weights Save Lives
Misdeclaration of the gross mass of a packed container can compromise the safety of shipping vessels by leading to incorrect stowage decisions and potentially collapsed or imbalanced container stacks. In a worldwide effort to improve shipping safety, the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has amended the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS) to require that all export containers requi ... [read article]
Paper Scrap Specification Changes
  The paper grade specification changes proposed late last year have been approved this week by the ISRI committee in Las Vegas. The new changes are outlined below and includes the six grades to be retired as of December 31st, 2016. The new grades will receive their own numbers and be included in the PS standards circular on June 1, 2016.   The ISRI Committee’s decis ... [read article]
Where to from Here? Q4, 2015
With recovered paper prices down to the 2009 level and with CDS now almost in sight, when will the sprint for waste to energy begin. After attending the October Paper and Plastics conference in Chicago I was left with the impression that certainly most of America`s recycling industry are no longer living the dream and rarely listening to Europe and certainly not Japan who at least have the ... [read article]
Paper Stock Grade Changes
ISRI - Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries 2016 Paper Stock Grade Changes As announced by the Paper Stock Industries committee on October 15th at the Chicago Paper and Plastics Conference, from April 2016 the recovered paper export definitions are officially changing for Bulk grades with the elimination of PS-6/7/8 Old Newspaper grades due to single stream (co-mingled) processing to ... [read article]
Warning Signs Ahead
Unfortunately history too often repeats itself and it has been six years since the GFC. Whilst we have not experienced any boom period since 2008, there are some worrying signals ahead. Namely: The mineral resources boom has severely reversed China is still increasing its board manufacturing over capacity and domestic waste paper recovery Finished product inventories are high, conse ... [read article]
Has Recovery and Export Peaked?
Published American ISRI Recovered Paper Industry data trends showed that waste paper recovery peaked at 65.1% or 78.5 million tonnes in 2007 with export volume and price peaking in August 2011 at 23.3 million short tons prior to weakening in 2012 and 2013. Exports to China in 2013 reduced -7.8% as were to most other countries with the exception of India which grew a modest 2.4%. From Austra ... [read article]
2014. No Easier Path Ahead
No crystal ball is necessary to see that most industry segments do not envisage anything special ahead this year. In fact the industry, shipping and currency volatility is likely to continue especially in the first quarter with an additional 3 million tonnes of new pulp capacity coming on stream, and the overcapacity in both pulp and paper to continue until supply and demand starts to balances ... [read article]
More Pain Before Gain
  Historically the month of September is the commencement of an industry upturn leading up to Christmas, however 2013 sees the export market stumbling when it should be finding its feet. There are many reasons starting with pulp prices e.g. BHK down to US$570 and when 30-40% yield loss is considered pure hard white waste can be worth no more than $370 in the eyes of many recycling mill ... [read article]
Forecast Warnings Are Relevant
The forecast of a decline in paper consumption of 60% by 2028 in Europe must ring a bell with every industry segment. We were all told that the paper and printing industries would continue with endless growth that industry economists confidentially forecasted. Sorry but economists do not run businesses nor face international competition and the Asian growth is Asia only,  and also vulnerab ... [read article]
Does our industry have a short term upside?
Unfortunately our industry has seen its best days. It peaked in early 2008 and with every month passing the highs are fewer and the lows are more frequent. We are no longer going to survive with cheap product obsolescence. Consumer spending is becoming more discerning and technology is continuing to have an impact on both packaging and paper consumption. Virgin and secondary fiber prices ar ... [read article]
Paper To Paper Bin - Australia Edition
This month we have produced a special Australian edition of the Paper to Paper under desk office recycling bin in classic Australian Green and Gold. E-mail for a quote. ... [read article]
Kerbside Recycling Rethink
Waste definitions were established for very good reasons and modified over many decades to accommodate the changes in material recovery methods and volumes as well as end user finished product requirements. Unfortunately suppliers and Government decision makers have forgotten that the end users have the final say for what recovered materials and volumes they can recycle. Finally China has had e ... [read article]
Paper Recovery Increases Whilst Paper Consumption Decreases
Australian Statistics have been showing for some time that on-line advertising and e-readers are seriously affecting paper consumption. This will continue to do so as the younger generation advocate and evolve such technology, and as the older generation become more comfortable with the convenience and data access of hand held devices.   Government and large businesses have traditi ... [read article]
Are MRF's Finished?
The threat of environmental enforcement has always been there from China, as well as a growing environmental concerns from Vietnam and more recently with pre shipment inspections for India and Indonesia. Both Mixed Paper and Mixed Plastic exports have hit the inevitable wall in China with the Green Fence policy being implemented November 30, 2013.     The MRF processing fo ... [read article]
Industry Statistics Confirm Paper Consumption Shrinkage
   The IndustryEdge 2012 statistics below do show consumption shrinkage in most segments of printing and packaging, however in respect to packaging and to a lesser extent paper from Internet purchased imports are not accounted for but would still  reflect overall industry shrinkage in the paper industry.   As a major industry indicator the largest she ... [read article]
We’re relocating – Reduced price bins!
Paper To Paper is discounting exclusive under desk Personal Document Security containers and Under Desk Recycling bins prior to our office relocation. These items are available ex stock in Mona Vale, NSW or delivery can be arranged.   REGAL Secure Document Container  - $85.00  $25.00+GST Quantity Available: 309 units @ $25.00 ea Colour: Gre ... [read article]
A Soft Landing Over the Next Six Months?
  The price correction in virgin pulp prices during July and August of around twelve percent, will inevitably push down the prices for pulp substitutes. Such prices had already become uncompetitive against bleached pulp in many markets, especially when all yield and bleaching costs are considered. Asian buyers especially Chinese, have been reluctant buyers of all grades for some weeks. ... [read article]
Are Waste Prices Sustainable?
  It is fortunate that global recovered papers price increases have offset the recent cost increases for ocean freight and the weak US dollar. From Australia, ex factory prices have held up for March and April, mainly due to Asian demand and uncertainty with exports from Japan, in relation to shipping availability and some caution with radiation content which has uncertain entry into C ... [read article]
Q2 Uncertainty
Whilst recovered paper prices have weakened around 5% so far during March, price uncertainty remains for the next quarter for a number of reasons, even without natural disasters. This is likely to be the first negative quarter since Q1 2009, especially as it also contains the May Golden holiday period in China. Shipping freight rate increases are already being felt from Australia which hav ... [read article]
Shipping Dynamics Affecting Bottomline
Whilst south bound ocean freight rates are softening from the northern hemisphere the same cannot be said firstly for New Zealand. NZ carriers have set rates for Q2 at record highs, with some rates far exceeding USD 2000/FEU and the inclusion of a Bunker Adjustment Factor increase of USD 150/40’ container ex NZ effective March. Not to mention simply cancelling bookings for what is conside ... [read article]
Printing and Publishing Industry Segments in Both Australia and NZ are Down by 14-20% for Q1
  If the dynamics of shipping are changing, this is minor compared to paper distribution, which after three decades of often forgiving bullish market conditions, fine paper distribution is turning a full circle back to mid seventies volumes. The viable numbers of key players surviving against direct imports to the larger printing groups will be dictating prices and terms. No doubt the ... [read article]
Are We Bouncing Along the Top?
At this time of year confusion reigns with Chinese import licence renewals, harsh European winter, and the uncertain but steady pulp prices. The forecast of a no frills Christmas does not lend itself to much joy, but at the same time, it appears to be a fairly balanced supply and demand scenario, with pricing if anything bouncing along the top. The signs for Q1, 2011 do not look much differ ... [read article]
Export Prices Weaken with Strong Dollar
Exporters are finding it increasingly difficult to not only cope with the volatile market conditions. They are also suffering with the weakening US dollar and ocean freight uncertainty and add on charges from shipping lines from Australasia. The opposite to the northern hemisphere where rates are weakening. The future is becoming increasingly difficult to forecast. Any buyer having to quot ... [read article]
Uncertainty Prevails
Following Ramadan and the Chinese Golden holiday periods, Q4 is shaping up as more of the same which in itself is not too bad, but certainly not wealth creating with a volatile currency and expensive shipping from some Australian and New Zealand ports. Europe has soaked up a major volume of export tonnage with the new 600,000 tonnes Prowell Papier machine in central Germany, which has redu ... [read article]
Market Remains Soft
There is no positive news from any region for August apart from Indonesia’s recommencement of their normal fiber import demand for post Ramadan deliveries from next week. This will provide some stability prior to early October when China’s golden holidays affect September shipments.   Chinese inventories are reported acceptable for waste paper and distressed tonnage has ... [read article]
Do Material Recovery Facilities Have a Future?
The first MRF from memory was with the Richards family in Chinderah, Northern NSW. They were also pioneers in the 80’s to design and manufacture a side loading compactor truck for co-mingled recyclables. This first generation MRF was very basic, but for Australia the start of the local government love affair with an expensive separation. During the past decade, disc screens, ballistic ... [read article]
Volatile Times Ahead
June has been a month of both price corrections for pulp and recovered paper. There has also been mixed messages regarding the price levels for finished paper products in Asia as Chinese mills dump papers into many Asian markets which have consequently slowed their demand and imports of raw materials. China is also dumping surplus softwood bleached Kraft at US$670 into India, down 20% from ... [read article]
Asian Mills Depressing WP Prices
As pulp prices peak in May, there is evidence of a weakening for June. The major influence being the uncertainty in the Chinese economy and short term demand for fiber softening due to speculators dumping surplus stock. The amount we do not yet know, however US$10-15 is anticipated for all recovered paper grades, even though supply from Europe will be limited in June and July. Mills are ju ... [read article]
Recovered Paper Exports Remain Bullish
March 2010 quarter export data was better than expected with only a slight reduction from a record December 09 quarter, which if consistent, is heading for a record 1.5 million tonnes for the year. Although data for the consumption of paper and board remains inaccurate, we do recognise that the cake has shrunk due to the recession, with the evidence of increasing on-line advertising resulting i ... [read article]
Pulp Substitutes Peaking With Bulk Grades Prices Bottomed
Although currency and ocean freight rates are negative against the Australian White paper exporters, the fundamentals being a steady increase in bleached pulp prices, has meant that the bleached pulp substitutes are in high demand. The graph below illustrates remarkable stability, far less volatile than bulk grades, which are predominantly influenced by Chinese packaging board mills. & ... [read article]
Waste Paper Market Correction
  As we enter Q2 2010, the inflationary pressures on old corrugated containers (OCC), which have included ocean freight increases, unfortunately will remain until Q3. The recent spate of natural disasters such as the earthquake in Chile, severe weather conditions in North America as well as lower waste generation are now showing signs of easing.   China has made OCC the be ... [read article]
Shipping Price Increases
Whilst there are mixed feelings if the market will firm or soften from April, no mill is game to run down stocks too low as the recovered fiber is neither in oversupply, nor can the prices collapse when shipping lines are passing on general freight increases and in some cases higher bunker and other surcharges to inflate prices.   Certainly, the shipping lines are under p ... [read article]
Waste Export New Record
Not surprisingly the December quarter 2009 established a new export record of 388,300 tonnes, an increase of 50,000 tonnes, consisting mainly of Cardboard ( OCC ) and Mixed papers, being 180,000 and 150,000 tonnes respectively. A drop off in bleached papers and newspapers was recorded, but this may be influenced by co-mingling of waste materials as well as a seasonal late December ... [read article]
Is The Next Bubble Sustainable?
 Australia reported paper and board consumption per capita back to 180-200 kilos per annum.  Although the December quarter recovered paper export figures are not yet available, it is also likely that data will show a return to normal if not a record.   With all global share market indexes on a bull run since late December 2009 and with China growth at 10.4% +, ... [read article]
A Flat Spot Before 2010 Recovery
As far as Chinese mills are concerned, the Christmas buying period for USA and Europe has been over for a while. Whilst Chinese mill inventories are no longer in stress export demand for their finished materials, buying will remain slow for the remainder of the year. Some buyers are forecasting a slight price reduction until January 2010, whilst others will want to build stock prior to the Chin ... [read article]
Will The Pricing Bubble Burst?
Whilst the frenzy for price restoration led by pulp producers and shipping lines during 2009 remains valid, it is often outstripping the ability of the consuming manufacturer to pass on these cost increases to their customers. Most packers are still recovering from enforced losses from contract cancellations in Q4 2008.  No doubt, once Chinese inventories are replenished, the demand a ... [read article]
Is Deinking News History?
With newsprint consumption in Australia down at least 15% (approximately 100,000 tonnes) for what was already a debateable deinking news quality at 70-80%, newspapers content is now at best, 55%.  By definition this is a Soft Mixed export quality.   Should reduction in consumption parallel America (down 21.5% this July from July 2008), deinking mills will either need to ... [read article]
SOP Good and Bad News
The Chinese and Asian over capacities in Newsprint production have seen many mills changing to Printing and Writing papers. This has led to an increase in demand for bleached pulp, thereby increasing pulp prices, especially softwood with the flow onto bleached pulp substitutes.   Whilst bulk waste paper prices ( News, OCC & Mixed ) have softened in June by US$10-15 per tonn ... [read article]
Weak US Dollar Erodes Price Increases
  With virgin pulp prices showing gradual recovery each quarter, recovered pulp substitutes are also improving in US dollar terms ( + $10 ), however the Australian dollar is being damaged by the weakening US currency. Unfortunately, price gains are not keeping pace with currency losses, which has experienced a negative reversal of seven hundred points or ten percent in ju ... [read article]
Are Plant Fires Preventable?
A total of seven fires have been recorded in 2009, which is both a record number, with the latest in the most modern Western Australia MRF which may exceed $11 million and take up to a year to rebuild assuming member councils agree.   MRFs comingled materials have always been open to abuse as a cheap way for disposal of hazardous material. This is exactly why e ... [read article]
So Much For Shipping Contracts
We all thought it was unacceptable for Asian mills during Q4, 2008 cancelling orders and/or renegotiating prices when material was in transit, but this quarter, the shipping lines have decided that bookings mean nothing nor confirmed ocean freight rates.   Like many businesses, shipping availability is subject to demand, and as usual, low value recovered paper is n ... [read article]
Paper Industry Stalls Again
Following a brighter January and February both March and April have seen production stall for most recovered paper grades. With bleached pulp now down to USD360 delivered, pulp substitutes demand and pricing are under pressure as it is now more competitive to utilise virgin fiber. The question always asked is, where will pricing be for pulp substitutes is simple. Just deduct 50 ... [read article]
A Bumpy Road Ahead
The second half of February demonstrated a dead cat bounce from what appeared to be a sustainable price recovery was short lived.  There are a combination of reasons for this:   - finished paper prices remain low as inventories are dumped into many markets - more USA and Canadian mills are facing Chapter 11 or worse closure - many Chinese mills have still not renewed import licences ... [read article]
Conflicting Market Signs
Following a disastrous last quarter of 2008 when demand and pricing was down seventy percent, the Asian market demand bounced back in early January for a number of reasons including Chinese New Year forward orders, raw materials inventory replenishment, pulp prices nearing their bottom ( $370 ) and low fibre recovery in America. Bulk grades pricing have increased mainly because newsprint ge ... [read article]
Does a Contract Mean Anything Today?
In past recessions, scheduled order shipments are either deferred, reduced and given an export allocation, and prices were renegotiated for new supply. This recession is very different:   - Firm contracts have been cancelled. - Transit tonnage prices have been negotiated down as much as seventy percent after shipment. - Shipments have just been abandoned at the port of destina ... [read article]
Is There a Cycle Bottom?
The last severe down cycle was in 1999 which commenced in October 1998 and bottomed in May 2009, when bleached pulp bottomed at US$420 per tonne.It is now US$450.   There are obviously many parallels with 2009, however in this cycle the economic fundamentals are far worse, particularly at the sources of the collapse, being America, and the crash this time was deeper and faster lea ... [read article]
Prices are Bottoming
Unfortunately overseas buying will only recommence once mills feel that prices cannot reduce any further.  This is now nearing the bottom, when offered prices for OCC are below USD100 CIF, which in some locations is below cost, and landfill becomes the cheaper alternative.   The timing for overseas mills to replenish minimum stock levels is not yet certain. The mills are either still ... [read article]
Dollar Weakness Helps Exporters
The strengthening of the US dollar in September which coincided with both interest rate and Australian currency corrections (totalling eighteen points) is helping offset the increases in ocean freight.  Erosion in waste paper prices has not yet bottomed, and may not, until February 2009.   No doubt the domestic manufacturers will need to adjust prices down, in line with export parity, ... [read article]
How Deep & For How Long?
It may appear that we have only recently experienced a rapid correction in both global demand for fibre and price correction, however this has been turning since March 2008.   Historical records show that with this downcycle, we will remain in a trough for up to two years e.g. the last major correction was 2004-2006 and before that 1997-1998, this period being a severe n ... [read article]
Emissions Trading Scheme Ramifications
Whilst it is too early to know the Government final decision for the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), or the likely details of Cap and Trade, it will inevitably have a negative impact for a struggling paper manufacturer like Australian Paper (AP), whose share price is already under pressure at $1.69.  Government is sniffing the additional tax benefits and how they will generousl ... [read article]
Industry Data
Whilst the paper and printing industry may carry a few associations responsible for data analysis, namely, Paper Round, PNEB, Australian Catalogue, APIA, PIAA,  these are few compared to government.  The question is, who has the data for decision making that is up-to-date, accurate and available?  It still does not exist.   The latest Australian Bureau of Agricultur ... [read article]
Export Prices Confusion
Rarely have we experienced export market prices for bulk recovered paper and board as confusing as it is for June which may not improve for the balance of 2008.   No doubt the Chinese market has been overheated for Mixed paper since early 07, with the price differential to No. 8 News below $20 (previously $40).  CCIC stricter environmental inspections, together with slow ... [read article]
Where are Pulp Subs Going?
We are already seeing a correction in SOP prices, firstly due to the deteriorating qualities, which are often only shredded Mixed generated from mobile shredders or not hand sorted at all. Board mills production has decreased due to the global slow down.  Tissue and fine paper mills are prepared to pay more for SWL and Manifold to improve yields and lessen bleaching costs.   The d ... [read article]
Will Shipping Get Worse?
September will be the crunch time globally, with more shipping line mergers, sell offs and ocean freight rate increases which will provide a clearer direction. What we already know is:   - Bunker fuel is now ten times higher than it was five years ago - Fuel costs are higher than the ship charter - Oil suppliers do not want fuel priced in USD - European rates are now sold in Eu ... [read article]
Australian Exporters are abusing waste paper definitions
Australian domestic paper and board mills as well as major independent exporters agreed in 2003 on recovered paper definitions to meet international standards.  Unfortunately these same agreed definitions are being ignored and in their place, 1st Whites are used to describe sorted white ledger.  Unfortunately, the grade exported is office pack which has a value of $100 less,  and co ... [read article]
Reverse Market Influences
No one would have forecast even a few years ago that waste paper prices would be strongly influenced by shipping restrictions and dwindling waste paper supply from the two major sources, USA and Europe. With a weak US dollar, there is no longer a surplus of outbound shipping containers for low value waste paper.  Firstly, America has become a more competitive source for other commoditie ... [read article]
Can MRFs meet China's new mixed paper standard?
It is not yet clear why China has sudddenly tightened their definition for kerbside mixed paper imports other than to enforce environmental minimum standards.  However the global consequence for single stream (co-mingled) kerbside recovery may render most MRFs obsolete, or render single stream just too risky for export to China. Any MRF processor will tell you that it is already impossible ... [read article]
Have Fibre Prices Peaked?
The unprecedented bullish pulp and recovered paper prices appear to have peaked in March with spot buying for recovered paper now more favoured compared to Asian panic buying during the past twelve months when longer term contract for bulk grades were being requested.   It is uncertain how far prices will weaken for bulk grades, in particular, Mixed which has already dropped up to $3 ... [read article]
QI - 2008 Ocean Freight Rates
   Whilst not all shipping lines have confirmed rates for the start of 2008 indications so far are that China rates will hold due to strong competition, with any transhipments via Singapore,Taiwan or Port Kelang increasing US$100 per FEU.  However already the General Rate Increase (GRI) is being eroded with some lines waiting until February and others March or even April subje ... [read article]
What Statistical Data?
The Pulp and Paper Edge Strategic Review 2007 exposed some interesting statistics in both Australia and New Zealand which poses some questions and exposes weaknesses with Australian Customs, ABS, NZBS and domestic paper industry reporting.   Newsprint consumption was 663.000 tonnes down (73,000MT) due to high stock holding at Albury during mill upgrade and declining standard newsprint consu ... [read article]
Waste Paper Exports Exceed 1 Million Tonnes
In 1995 Australia exported 250,000 tonnes of recovered paper and board and by 2004 a total of 342,000 which was considered to be an exceptional effort considering this then represented 23% of domestic waste paper utilisation.   2007 - Australia’s utilisation of waste paper has actually declined 9.6%, however exports have increased to 1,071,000 tonnes or 74.5% of the domestic utilisati ... [read article]
Stock Lots Wanted
STOCK LOTS WANTED PAPER AND PLASTIC Reels - Sheets - Cartons - Bales We take pleasure in announcing our new Paper To Paper stock lots new website:   Your prime oddment inventory Rej ... [read article]
Paper Merchants
If we revisit 1975 there existed the big 5 paper merchants e.g. Bowater-Spicers-Edwards Dunlop/BJ Ball Wiggins Teape and Dalton groups. From these groups emerged over the next decade many smaller up to mid size merchants e.g. Moirs - Howarth, Commonwealth Paper - Walter T Mailing – Vilenski – Jaeger - Mitchell Ross – VRG – Tomasetti - Regal - K W Doggett - CPI and many ot ... [read article]
Export Price Correction Timing
Recovered Paper packers have enjoyed peak prices through most of 2007 due to both high recovered fibre and low ocean freight rates. These almost record high prices will soon correct hastened with currency appreciation which is a lottery dictated by the USA economy. This does not mean a market crash, nor an over correction, nor a seasonal inventory adjustment but more a price restoration for virg ... [read article]
Australia 4th Quarter 2007 freight rates have remained on hold for SE Asia with no noticeable change for the same period 2002. The stability, however may not last with the recent push by a united shipping company front for increases seen from Europe US$12-15/MT, and to a lesser extent USA $3-5/MT affective mid January 08 . Generally in the past this has proved unsustainable for shipping companies ... [read article]
Clayton UTZ implements ‘Footprints’ strategy across all its offices
Clayton Utz Brisbane Takes Responsibility to Reduce its Environmental Footprint.   Product Stewardship is a concept that we are going to hear a lot more about as the corporate world, both large and small, focus more on environmentally sustainable development.   Product Stewardship is taking responsibility for what happens both up and downstream to materials that an organisation consu ... [read article]
Deutsche Bank Place at 126 Phillip Street
Great Team Work Creates a New Sustainability Benchmark   Deutsche Bank Place at 126 Phillip Street in Sydney, with approximately 3000 people on 31 floors, is a shining example of what can be done when a good team is focused on continuous improvement in their sustainability practices.   Recycling figures for the property for 2006/2007 put the level of diversion of waste from land fi ... [read article]
Kiama Council with Innovative New Waste Minimisation System
Kiama Municipal Council ‘Walks the Talk’ & Increases its Own Recycling by 50% Kiama Council Significantly Reduces Cleaning Times with Innovative New Waste Minimisation System A reduction in cleaning time of forty minutes each day has been an unforseen and significant benefit resulting from the installation of an innovative at-source recycling system at Kiama Municipal Council ... [read article]