Tissue manufacturers are under unprecedented pressure. Pulp price volatility and the skilled labor shortage remain primary concerns. However, the increased emphasis on sustainability, product differentiation, and global competition cannot be ignored.
Increased pulp prices are likely the norm for the foreseeable future. Tissue manufacturers and converters are placed squarely in the middle of the supply-and-demand struggle. Questions about costs and profitability are inevitable.
In response, source rolls of less expensive fiber are being used to help control costs. Hot embossing is heavily relied upon to deliver toilet paper and paper towel rolls of increased firmness and volume while simultaneously preserving tissue quality.
Doing so helps tissue manufacturers deliver to customer quality expectations and remain competitive in the global marketplace. Customers are particular about the tissue products they use, and a shift in quality could cause dissatisfaction. Loyal brand advocates may leave and take their dollars — and tissue manufacturers’ margins — with them.