Regulatory issues are changing the raw material landscape for ink manufacturers and their suppliers, as countries clamp down on pollution.
“The overall rising pressure through regulations is making sourcing growingly difficult,” said Robert Doerffel, corporate communications Europe for hubergroup. “It happens for good reasons, and we may want to differentiate between consumer protection and environmental protection introduced causes.
“Raw materials become more expensive, because regulations demand highest grade of purity for e.g. food packaging applications,” Doerffel added. “Globally, the awareness is growing in this sector, and with large markets additionally pushing into that subject, prices are climbing. At the same time, we have ink industry sourcing companies closing entire production lines due to stricter environmental regulations, e.g. in China. All that contributes to a declining availability, putting also a lot of pressure on the price.”
“The Chinese approach to shutting down energy plants for environmental reasons has caused the raw material industry in China to produce less than what was planned,” said Jan Paul van der Velde, SVP, procurement, sustainability, regulatory and IT for Flint Group. “ This has affected a number of key intermediates used in printing industry consumables. On top of that, environmental regulations are part of the ongoing challenges with Bon Acid.”
Jeffrey Shaw, chief supply chain, quality, and business improvement officer, Sun Chemical, noted that Sun Chemical remains strongly committed to corporate social responsibility, and continues to conduct business with suppliers that are compliant with environmental regulations and are also committed to the ideals of corporate social responsibility.
“The drive in developing countries, such as China and India, to enforce tighter environmental regulations has resulted in periodic disruptions for suppliers and we have to continue developing contingencies to deal with sourcing challenges,” added Shaw. “Supplier risk management remains a priority for our integrated supply chain organization. These challenges will continue to be a threat to cost and supply until governmental agencies in these countries achieve their goals. In the meantime, at Sun Chemical we continue to work with these suppliers to achieve their goals and identify alternate global suppliers.”
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