The story of a revolutionary paper
It is not every day that you come up with something entirely new in an industry like ours. Last summer, I had a chance to witness the birth of an innovation that has the ability to be a real game changer for the book publishing industry.
Originally, the idea to develop a new lightweight paper came from our customers. When they asked if we could come up with a hybrid paper that would be similar to woodfree uncoated papers – and which would be suitable for the economical production of high volume books – it inspired us to respond with a clever solution.
Our highly motivated crew at Kaipola paper mill in Finland accepted the challenge right away. They have been producing telephone directory papers for years and have experience in making papers even with such a low grammage as 29 gsm.
We began our work by engaging in close dialogue with our customers. When we shared the information with our research and development team and our crew at Kaipola, we saw how enthusiastic they were to create something totally new. It was quite a fantastic moment when we found an innovative solution together with our suppliers: Our team was able to tackle the bleaching issue of the mechanical fibres in the most cost-efficient way.
Of course, performing the first trial printings with some of our customers was also an enlightening experience for all of us. Holding those initial printed samples in my hands was extremely satisfying as they were exactly what we aimed to achieve. Our customers, who have been with us throughout this entire journey, were likewise impressed. Our new UPM EcoLite was finally ready to conquer the world.
The more feedback we receive from those who use our paper, the better our paper gets. Our team has been working hard to produce a hybrid solution that provides a completely new, economic alternative for customers that use lightweight papers. UPM EcoLite is designed for book publishing, and for pharmaceutical leaflets and manuals. It is especially suitable for end-uses where thickness, opacity and a fit-for-purpose quality play a key role.
We consider it an honour that we were able to work closely with our thin print customers in helping them solve the issues they are facing. The economical but also highly ecological option that we have provided has made it possible for them to address challenges associated with profitability.