There is no denying that the past two years has seen a huge shake up to the basic core of direct mail. David Attenborough’s documentary was the catalyst that the market needed to make fundamental changes across the industry and our customers have risen to the challenge. At E&B we have spent the past two years travelling the country and working with Sitma to help develop alternatives to traditional poly wrap and offer the best paper wrapping and alternative, environmentally sound solutions.

As with every environmental decision there are always pros and cons and paper wrap itself isn’t without its own environmental issues but studies have shown that the paper lifecycle is considerably more sustainable than poly. However, unlike plastic, people are not confused by paper, they know that they can recycle it and distributors don’t need to write clever messages on the wrapping to let people know that the material they are seeing can be recycled or composted. Poly wrapping requires commitment to communicating with the end user regarding disposal, which has its’ own set of challenges.

Sitma wrap paper wrap solution

One of our first paper wrap customers, Stephens and George, had a number of reservations regarding the change to paper from poly, they had concerns about the cost of paper as a material and the extra weight over a thin plastic film. However, there are other cost cutting advantages including discounts available from Royal Mail’s MailMark discount scheme because the clarity of the barcode exceeds that on the poly wrap alternative. Whilst paper is also more expensive than traditional polywrap materials it is cheaper than the other compostable/recyclable alternatives – which make it more attractive as a solution for customers. Stephens and George were also impressed by the minimal wastage after testing the system and have now had the equipment running since June 2019. Watch a video of their machine The whole article can be found in this Print Business magazine article:

For many of our customers the quick movement to paper has been driven by business necessity, but there are many benefits beyond the obvious environmental ones. There are great advertising opportunities with paper wrapping, with the whole wrap providing space for promotion. There are also a  number of different wrapping solutions that each have their own unique set of positive attributes, Sitma paper wrapping kits can offer; Full wrap, Half wrap (pocket), Paper Band, Open and Close System solutions.

Full wrap, with fully adaptable Nordson gluing system, showing advertising options

The beauty of Sitma’s equipment is that it is also capable of running a range of compostable, biodegradable and recyclable plastics, allowing our customers to make environmentally informed decisions. The machines can be switched from Poly to paper, and vice versa, with a short 15-30 minute changeover time. This means that your business can provide customers with a wide range of solutions, which can only benefit the end user. The mechanical speed of each version is also the same, so there is no loss in productivity and output can remain the same.

So, here at E&B, we have had a busy year offering alternative solutions to our customers and installing new paper wrapping kit but we understand that the decision to change isn’t clear cut. The key to moving businesses forward is the ability to offer choice. This is a market that is going to be evolving and changing over the next few years. No business wants to be seen as a pollutant and these developments are positive. Our customers, who have already made the changes, are looking at purchasing more paper wrap equipment and have seen the benefits of the investment. With 11 lines already installed over the past year and the same again in the pipeline, the movement to paper wrap looks to be continuing into 2020.

To find our more about our paper wrapping options please call Richard MacLean on 01420 593680 or email