Although some people might consider paper an archaic form of communication, companies such as UPM continue to show that paper isn’t just a relevant part of our past, but a vital piece of our future, as well.
“We at UPM believe in a coexistence between print and the digital media,” the company says. “Both paper and digital solutions are needed. There will always be people who refuse to read long text off a screen, and those who print out things they find online. There will always be advertisers who insist on the aesthetics of the printed page and those who know the power of multichannel media mix – online and print.”
UPM is the world’s leading producer of graphic papers and a supplier of a wide product range that includes magazine, newsprint, fine and specialty papers. Its business is divided into two distinct business areas: UPM Paper Europe and North America and UPM Paper Asia.
In Europe and North America, UPM operates 18 modern paper mills that produce 10.2 million tons of magazine paper, newsprint and fine paper each year and employ 10,600 people. UPM Paper Asia is a smaller operation with three modern paper mills in Asia and Europe that employ 1,700 people. The operation has an annual production capacity of 1.5 million tons of fine paper and label papers.
Between the two divisions, UPM produces:
- > Sheet-fed offset papers
- > Heatset web offset papers
- > Rotogravure papers
- > Coldset web offset papers
- > Digital printing papers
- > Office papers
- > Postal papers
- > Packaging papers
- > Label papers
Paper of Valor
The company also continues its history of innovation by innovating new paper solutions. After several years of development, UPM launched a new paper grade in November, called UPM Valor.
“UPM Valor combines our expertise and high-quality materials,” Product Portfolio Manager Antti Pokkinen says. “We have taken a massive leap forward in the development of our traditional paper products. UPM Valor was created by market demand. Customers expect cost efficiency from paper deliveries. Printed publications need to compete with other media products.”
UPM says the new line was created to address paper producers’ want for paper made from as little material as possible while keeping the paper properties consistent. UPM says paper products can become more competitive by saving on mailing and delivery costs by using a lighter-weight paper. The product is ideal for publications and printed products that are expected to be premium quality. The opacity, lightness, color reproduction ability and smoothness are as good as those of heavier paper grades, according to UPM. The company also says that the properties of UPM Valor are similar to medium heavy-coated or lightly coated printing papers, depending on the basis weight.
UPM Valor is part of a greater company initiative to create sustainable products using sustainable processes. UPM designed a program called More with Biofore. The concept centers on creating more with less. Through better material efficiency, UPM seeks to create paper products using less water with less energy and generate less waste, thereby giving products more economic and environmental value. UPM’s commitment to sustainability was recently recognized by the Global Dow Jones Sustainability Index. UPM was listed in the indices for the third year in a row and this year was listed as the industry leader in the Dow Jones European and World Sustainability indices.
“We have been assessed as the world’s sustainability leader of our industry and we can be very proud of it,” CEO Jussi Pesonen says.
UPM assesses the sustainability of every one of its processes, including the origins of the wood fiber, emissions from production processes, effluent treatment, energy consumption, carbon footprint, water consumption and chemicals.
“To continually improve the sustainability of our products throughout the whole lifecycle and value chain, UPM has adopted the concept of ecodesign as a systematic approach in product design,” the company says. “Ecodesign is an approach that takes environmental factors into consideration in the design and development of products, covering the whole lifecycle.”