Covid-19 has affected almost every part of daily life for people around the world from how we work, where we can (or perhaps more accurately cannot) travel, who we see and what we buy. One of the most affected markets by COVID-19 has been the tissue paper market – from napkins to toilet roll, both the consumer and away from home (AFH) markets have seen dramatic changes.
The impact of lockdown on supply and demand
Imbalances in the supply and demand of tissue paper were first witnessed when China, a major global player in the manufacturing of tissue paper, saw temporary closures of mills as a continuation of Chinese New Year holidays. Overall, the Chinese market saw a decline of 5000MT in tissue exports in the 1st quarter of 2020, whilst COVID-19 and related lockdowns spread across the world, converters and factories also saw varying effects on their demand.
Changes in the Away From Home Market
Those supplying the AFH market which focuses on napkins, paper towels, facial tissues for example, have witnessed a reduction in demand as lockdown measures limited all travel both in a professional and leisure capacity. The exception to this trend continues to be the demand for tissue used in medical applications which, while representing a minor portion of the AFH market, has seen a significant rise in demand.
Converters & Panic Buying
Converters and factories supplying the consumer markets have seen an increase in demand and sales for their products during lockdown, as customers around the world started panic buying and hoarding supplies. Consumers were faced with empty shelves and when stock became available, buying limits put in place by retailers. Toilet tissue in particular became such a valuable commodity that there have been physical altercations between customers over the last packs available in store and even robberies of commercial vehicles!
Relying on reserve materials, working with existing suppliers and diversifying their supply chain to satisfy demand for both tissue and greyboard, converters have been able to increase capacity in line with demand. With lockdown still in place in many markets, this high level of demand is expected to continue around the world, meaning all parties involved in the supply chain of tissue and greyboard need to take a proactive approach to minimise disruption and ensure ongoing supply to consumers.
Virgin Tissue Reels for UK Market
Recently, PG Paper was delighted to have sourced 100% virgin tissue reels from Asia for one of our UK customers who converted the virgin tissue on their high-speed machines to over 1.2million rolls of toilet tissue, to help re-stock British supermarket shelves.
PG Paper is Here to Help!
PG is proud be a supplier of tissue paper and greyboard to the UK market and other markets around the world – and we are grateful for the support of our supply chain partners in co-ordinating the speedy delivery of these much-needed virgin tissue reels to our customer.
If PG Paper can assist with your supply chain please get in touch today!