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Label stocks improve after UPM strikes

Companies are starting to see the return of materials despite after strikes cause months of delays

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Production levels reached normal levels at UPM Tampere after the strikes which ended on April 22nd

Strikes across Europe, especially within the Finnish Paperworker’s Union, made significant impacts on businesses across the globe and in the UK earlier in the year.

Label companies especially felt the pinch as employees at UPM Raflatac went on strike for nearly four months.

Companies like Supplyline Auto ID, which are based in West Sussex, have commented on a return of material deliveries for orders that were placed months ago. According to the company, UPM has informed them that the situation will improve over the next few months but will still take time to completely plateau.

UPM Raflatac’s Tampere factory resumed production at the start of May, stating it was ‘returning to normal after the strike’.

Antti Jääskeläinen, executive vice president at UPM Raflatac, says: “We are pleased that a new business-specific agreement is now reached with the Finnish Paperworkers’ Union, enabling us to better serve our customers in the future.

We are still holding off from producing stock list items for stock just while we are seeing the delays as a precaution, but with the improvement in our lead times we can confirm these can be made and shipped in...

“The agreement allows for additional production flexibility at our Tampere factory and gives us the ability to better respond to demand peaks. Increased capacity utilisation also opens future opportunities for employment.”
Companies such as Supplyline are in a good position after ensuring they were well stocked before major shortages began.

The company states: “We are still holding off from producing stock list items for stock just while we are seeing the delays as a precaution, but with the improvement in our lead times we can confirm these can be made and shipped in three-to-five working days from order placement.”

Both UPM and its customers are still seeing the effects of raw material shortages and logistical problems that started in early 2021. Suppliers and end-users are closely monitoring the situation, and buying extra stock in order to offset increases in other materials such as PET.

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