Wan-Ifra — new report on printing using 40gsm newsprint

Helping to make the business sustainable by optimizing printing costs

Wan-Ifra report on 40 gsm paper. photo Wan-Ifra

The new report brought out by the World Printers Forum chapter in India offers publishers a practical guide to migrate to lower grammage newsprint, helping them to make their business sustainable by optimizing printing costs.

This report provides a practical guide to printing using 40 g/m2 newsprint and takes the reader through the various aspects that need to be considered. Detailed analysis of lower grammage newsprint, supported by laboratory findings, provide an understanding of where things could go wrong. Another important element of this report is the detailed evaluation of different TIC  (total ink coverage) parameters according to the grammage of the newsprint.

The savings in printing could not only emanate from the cost of newsprint, but also on the savings in ink. ISO 12647-3 recommends TIC 220 for cold-set offset, irrespective of the grammage of newsprint used. However,  the studies done for the purposes of this report showed it is feasible to move to lower TIC. This finding was corroborated by the savings recorded by publishers who have moved to a lower TIC. However, it must be noted that it is not a one-size-fits-all solution, and each user must optimize his/her printing infrastructure to achieve the desired results.

The opinions of those who have migrated to 40 g/m2 newsprint support the premises laid out in the report aimed at helping newspaper publishers to save on printing costs and make the newspaper business sustainable for a long time to come.

“Use of lower GSM newsprint has 3%-6% yield benefit, improving productivity and cost. However, the challenges that are added with high speed ops and quality, need gearing up. This guide is the concoction of many success stories in using lower grammage paper designed to help its adoption,” said SC Roy, technical director of Bennett, Coleman and chairman of Wan-Ifra World Printers Forum India Chapter.

The report analyses in detail the benefits of lower grammage newsprint, throws light on mistakes that are likely to occur during the migration and explains how to avoid them. It also gives a detailed evaluation of the different TIC (total ink coverage) parameters as per the grammage of the newsprint.

The analysis is backed by laboratory findings and results of test charts printed at the newspaper presses. Interviews and opinions of publishers who have migrated to 40 gsm newsprint are also included, bolstering the premise laid out in the report.

“This report is a kind of sequel to our earlier report, ‘Implications of changing to lower grammage newsprint’. With the cost pressure on newspaper production accelerated by Covid-19 pandemic, this report provides an easy-to-use ‘DIY’ guide for newspaper printers to actually start migrating to printing using lower grammage newsprint. We believe this report will be a valuable guide for newspaper printers in general and to Wan-Ifra members in particular,” said Magdoom Mohamed, managing director of Wan-Ifra South Asia.

What the report offers to publishers

  • Provides answers to the questions that a printer faces before implementing or migrating to printing using lower grammage newsprint.
  • Studies and compares the properties of lower grammage newsprint against the standard references to find the deviations and to provide some key recommendations based on the results.
  •  Helps to understand the challenges of using 40gsm newsprint in day-to-day production.
  • Formulates the ideal approach for migration to lower grammage newsprint.
  • Makes recommendations for collaborating with suppliers.

Commenting on the report, Ingi Olafsson, director of World Printers Forum, Wan-Ifra said that “it is of great value for the newspaper printers to get this report that will support them in their journey of going from 42 to 40 gsm. Cost cutting is of great importance in our industry and all tools that help us in that respect are a true benefit for Wan-Ifra members.”

The report released at the recent Wan-Ifra Indian Printers Summit, was presented by KN Shanth Kumar,  director of The Printers Mysore and member of the supervisory board of Wan-Ifra, and SC Roy, technical director of Bennett, Coleman and chairman of Wan-Ifra World Printers Forum India Chapter.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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