Posts Tagged ‘Norske Skog’

  • ‘Uncovered openings’ at fatal gas leak site

    Norske Skog’s paper mill near Albury, NSW.

    An investigation into a gas leak that claimed the lives of two workers at Norske Skog’s Albury paper mill has found that deadly hydrogen sulphide gas leaked from “uncovered openings” at the site.

    The finding was revealed in a safety alert issued this week by SafeWork NSW titled Exposure of workers to hydrogen sulphide gas.

    In an email response to questions, a spokesperson for SafeWork NSW told Print21 there would be no further comment until the investigation is completed:

     SafeWork NSW issued a safety alert on 12 June 2018 to help NSW workplaces that may use, generate, store or handle hydrogen sulphide (H2S) gas, to identify sources of potential exposure and manage risks to health and safety. The SafeWork NSW investigation into the Norske Skog paper mill incident remains ongoing, and no further comment on the investigation will be made until it is completedSafeWork NSW will be preparing a Report for the Coroner.

    In its safety notice published earlier this week SafeWork said:

    Hydrogen sulphide is found during the production and drilling of crude oil and natural gas, in sewers and sewage treatment plants, in swine and manure-handling operations, and in pulp and paper operations. 

    In the pulp and paper industry hydrogen sulphide may result from cooking processes, acid cleaning equipment and the mixing of acids with process liquors which can produce large volumes of gas, even in open environments. It can also be produced when separate acid and process sewers come together in effluent ponds.

    Recently two workers died at a paper mill, likely due to breathing in high levels of hydrogen sulphide gas from a tank used for containing process water. Uncovered openings allowed the gas to escape and overcome the workers.

    Mill workers Ben Pascall and Lyndon Quinliven died after being overcome by the gas fumes. A third man, Ben Johnson, was released from hospital last week after spending several days in a critical condition on life support.

    Production resumed at the Albury plant this week after being shut down last month following the incident.

    “It’s massively important for the morale of the employees, everybody seems anxious to get back to work and spend some time with their mates and get the machine running,” plant manager Milo Foster told The Border Mail. “It’s just a massive tragedy, I don’t think things will ever be quite the same, but people have been able to grieve.”

  • Mill worker makes remarkable recovery

    Norske Skog’s mill at Ettamogah near Albury, NSW.

    A 22-year-old worker who remained critically ill on life support for more than a week after two of his colleagues died in a gas leak at Norske Skog’s Albury newsprint mill has made “remarkable progress” and was discharged from hospital yesterday.


    The family of Tom Johnson, who maintained a bedside vigil at the Critical Care Unit at Albury Hospital, issued a statement earlier this week thanking hospital staff.


    Tom has made remarkable progress over the past week. It has been a gruelling 11 days and for Tom we have had the best possible outcome. Our family extends our deepest sympathies to Ben and Lyndon’s families and friends. Our thoughts and Tom’s thoughts are with you all.

    We would like to thank the ICU staff for their patience and understanding and for taking care of Tom and the family.


    36-year-old Lyndon Quinlivan and Ben Pascall, 28, died on May 24 after inhaling the toxic fumes following a gas leak at the Norske Skog site in Ettamogah near Albury on the Victoria-NSW border.


    A SafeWork NSW investigation into the incident is continuing. “Initial inquiries indicate the men were working in the basement area of the mill when they were overcome by Hydrogen Sulfide gas (H2S) and collapsed,” said a spokesperson.


    SafeWork NSW says it is preparing a report for the Coroner.


    184 people are employed at the newsprint production mill, which has been shut down since the incident.



  • Two dead after Norske Skog gas leak

    Norske Skog’s mill at Albury, NSW

    Two workers have died and two more remain in hospital following a gas leak at Norske Skog’s paper mill in Ettamogah, near Albury NSW, yesterday.

    The leak of what is suspected to be hydrogen sulfide gas on Thursday May 24 saw emergency workers called to the plant around 3pm. 18 staff were sent to hospital, and about 150 evacuated; a spokesperson for Albury-Wodonga Health told Print21 this morning that 14 have since been released, and one of the two remaining workers is in a stable condition.

    Steve Murphy, AMWU.

    The Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union (AMWU) confirmed that it is looking into the incident, which Steve Murphy, NSW state secretary, described as a tragedy. “Our primary focus at this time is to support our members and their families. Our Union organisers have been on site and remain available to members,” he said. “We will be working with our union delegates and Safe Work to determine the cause of the incident and will make more comment once the circumstances of this tragedy become clearer.”

    Safe Work NSW has also launched an investigation, but no further details have yet been made available.

    184 people are employed at the mill, which has been shut down following the incident. Management was unavailable for comment. Norske Skog, Australia’s leading newsprint manufacturer, was recently acquired by a London-based venture capital firm, saving it from bankruptcy.

  • Issue 1011 – May 18, 2018

    It’s the trend of the times – Australian consumption of newsprint is cratering. Fortunately for manufacturer Norske Skog, recently rescued by a private equity firm, you don’t have to sell only domestically to make money. China and India are buying our paper in huge volumes, so exporting newsprint is still a good way to turn a profit.

    Welcome to your latest issue of Print21, the premier news and information service for the printing industry across Australia and New Zealand.

    Jake Nelson
    Editor – Labels and Industrial Print

  • Newsprint imports crash as exports soar

    Norske Skog Boyer, Tasmania.

    Imports of newsprint have plummeted by 70 percent from this time last year, according to industry bible Pulp and Paper Edge. At the same time, exports have jumped by almost half.

    Newsprint imports totalled only 5348 tonnes for the March quarter of this year, a drop of 70 percent from the same quarter in 2017, and 34,680 tonnes for the year ending March, a drop of 47 percent from the previous year. Australia exported 51,154 tonnes in the same quarter, a 47 percent increase over this time last year, with a 59 percent increase for the year ending March 2018.

    Tim Woods.

    Writing in Pulp and Paper Edge, industry guru Tim Woods concludes this can only be a result of a drop in domestic consumption. “The clear implication of plunging imports and surging exports is that Australia’s domestic Newsprint consumption is continuing to fall and has fallen sharply over the last year. The only operating assumption we need to deploy for this analysis is that production has remained relatively stable.

    “Imports are down by almost exactly 31,000 tonnes and exports are up by around 69,000 tonnes, implying consumption is down by almost exactly 100,000 tonnes,” he said.

    The figures come not long after the rescue of bankrupt newsprint manufacturer Norske Skog by London-based investment firm Oceanwood Capital, which Wood hailed as good news for Norske Skog’s 2500 employees. “Norske Skog’s plan is clearly focused on continuing to operate, with its new capital structure and ownership in place. Regulatory approval is required, including from Australian and New Zealand regulators, but there would be no public utility in denying the company this future,” he wrote.

    Though domestic consumption is down, Woods notes that strong export figures, particularly to India and China, are a bright spot for the local manufacturer. “Domestic sales may be preferred over exports, but diversity of customers may well be the difference between success and failure in a very challenging Newsprint market,” he said.

  • Issue 1008 – May 9, 2018

    In a week where dozens of printing industry workers lost their jobs in Brisbane and Melbourne, the private equity deal to rescue Australia’s largest newsprint and magazine paper manufacturer Norske Skog was welcome news to hundreds of paper mill workers in Australia and New Zealand.


    Welcome to your latest issue of Print21, the premier news and information service for the printing industry across Australia and New Zealand.

    Graham Osborne
    Online Editor

  • Equity firm buys newsprint maker Norske Skog

    Norske Skog Boyer, Tasmania.

    A private equity firm has signed a $373m deal to buy bankrupt newsprint and magazine paper manufacturer Norske Skog, which operates two mills in Australia and one in New Zealand. 

    Norske Skog Australasia is the region’s leading newsprint and magazine paper maker.

    London investment firm Oceanwood Capital won the auction process for the Norway-based global paper manufacturer and has entered into a sale and purchase agreement to buy the issued share capital of Norske Skog for €235m ($373m). The board of Norske Skog had filed for bankruptcy in December 2017.

    Norske Skog has seven mills around the world, including two in Australia – which produce most of the country’s newsprint – and one in New Zealand. The AMWU says the agreement secures the jobs of hundreds of local mill workers.

    Norske Skog Boyer in Tasmania employs about 270 people, with an annual production of around 290,000 tonnes of newsprint, improved newsprint, book grades and lightweight coated grades. Norske Skog Albury in NSW employs 185 staff and has an annual production capacity of around 274,000 tonnes – about 40% of the newsprint and related grades used in Australia each year.

    Norske Skog Tasman at Kawerau in New Zealand has 160 employees. The manufacturer and supplier of directory, newsprint, improved newsprint and book paper products to NZ and international publishers and print media, produces up to 150,000 tonnes of paper each year.

    ‘Resolving the stalemate’: Sven Ombudstvedt, chairman, Norske Skog.

    The transaction is expected to be completed in the second half of this year, subject to regulatory approvals in the countries concerned, including Australia and New Zealand.

    “This is one of the most important milestones for the Norske Skog Group in recent years and concludes almost two years of relentless efforts and engagement to address the Norske Skog Group’s excessively levered capital structure,” said Sven Ombudstvedt, the chairman of Norske Skog. “Oceanwood’s decision to acquire a majority position in the secured bond and subsequently the decision to initiate a sales process proved to be the key to resolving the stalemate that was threatening the future of the operating business.”

    John Chiang of Oceanwood, said: “Our first investment in Norske Skog was back in 2015 and we have supported and worked constructively with the group since. In November 2017, as it became apparent that it would be difficult to reach a consensual solution and solve the financial issues in the former Norske Skogindustrier holding structure, we decided to act to protect the operating companies. With the subsequent auction process now concluded, we are very excited to team up with Norske Skog’s management and employees. We share the ambition to see the new Norske Skog Group succeed and to realise the potential that we believe is inherent in the business as it continues to transform and grow.”

  • Australian publishers lead on sustainability

    It should be a normal expectation that companies would choose to police their own sustainability performance. And yet we still cannot manage to do it on any sort of realistic scale. This is dangerous for the graphics industry, because the alternative is regulation by external entities. We already see this in restrictions on chemical usage and the disposal of waste.

    However, self-regulation can be very successful, especially if it is done on a large scale and in partnership with government. The topic was recently discussed at a meeting of the Global Product Stewardship Council in Australia. The Australian government’s department of the Environment and Energy hosted this forum in order to better understand the various product stewardship and responsibility programmes operating in the country. The idea of this consultation exercise was to help the government to get sufficient information for a review of its Product Stewardship Act, so that it could be updated to be more current.

    The consultation provided practical insights to the Australian government across industries, including publishing. A wide range of speakers contributed, mainly coming down on the side of regulation. A lot of the speakers represented organisations with a vested interest in a rules-based system. If there are laws to abide by, there is an opportunity for providing the services required to ensure legal compliance. Investment in the relevant processes and plant can be more confidently made because the law requires compliance guaranteeing a steady flow of customers and revenues.

    But the idea of regulation for the common good or as a means of creating business opportunities is not universally popular. A group of Australian newspaper and magazine publishers tend to the self-regulatory end of the spectrum. They have been working in partnership with the government for a number of years to avoid it. The National Environmental Sustainability Agreement (NESA) is a voluntary agreement between the Australia’s government, major magazine and newspaper publishers and Norske Skog Australasia, the country’s leading newsprint and magazine paper maker. Norske Skog is also the top processor and user of post-consumer waste newspapers and magazines in Australia. The publishers involved are News Corp Australia, Fairfax Media, Seven West Media, Pacific Magazines, APN News and Media, and Bauer Media Group. Together they are committed to recycle 77% of newspaper products.

    A key principle of this agreement is that no legislation is required and that “Publishers also commit to advancing recycling, purchasing newsprint with recycled content and providing $1,000,000 advertising space to governments to promote recycling. The industry signatories will provide transparent and reliable annual data on the performance of this agreement.”

    NESA started in 1992 and is reviewed every five years. Since it came into force Australia’s recycling rate has risen from 28% to 78%. But over the last five years’ newsprint consumption in Australia has fallen by around 40%, so it is not clear what the NESA will look like if it is renewed after the current agreement expires in 2020. Whatever its future, NESA has set a benchmark for environmental agreements between publishers and governments. Australia is leading the way in its environmental partnerships and its approach deserves a closer look.

    The Verdigris project is an industry initiative intended to raise awareness of print’s positive environmental impact. It provides a weekly commentary to help printing companies keep up to date with environmental standards, and how environmentally friendly business management can help improve their bottom lines. 

    Verdigris is supported by the following companies: Agfa GraphicsEFIEpson, FespaHPKodakKornit, RicohSpindrift, Splash PRUnity Publishing and Xeikon.

  • PANPAs evolve into News Media Awards

    Entries close next week for NewsMediaWorks’ revamped News Media Awards – formerly known as the PANPA Newspaper of the Year awards.

    The new look awards combine the former PANPAs with the Advertising and Marketing Awards.

    ‘An important evolution’: Peter Miller, CEO NewsMediaWorks.

    Peter Miller, CEO of NewsMediaWorks, the peak organisation representing Australia’s leading news media publishers, says the move reflects “the fundamental collaboration between content and commercial teams in today’s news media landscape, where one cannot survive without the other.

    “An important evolution in the awards criteria, that reflects audience engagement across print and digital, is a new emphasis on platform agnostic news brands. And for the first time, relevant categories are open to advertising creative developed either in-house by advertisers, by publishers, or by a third party, such as an agency.”

    “As the news media sector evolves to embrace new ways of connecting quality, trusted journalism with audiences across platforms, so too must the awards program evolve to remain relevant to the publishers and products it represents.”

    The 2018 News Media Awards gala dinner will be held on September 14th at the Hilton Sydney, at the conclusion of the annual INFORM News Media Summit. Entries opened on March 12th and will close on April 27th.

    The awards are sponsored by Media Super, Norske Skog, AAP, DIC and UnLtd.

    The 2018 categories are:

    News Brand Categories
    News Brand of the Year (Daily, Weekend, Regional, Community and Overall winner)
    News Story of the Year

    Advertising Categories
    Best Execution of Print Advertising for a Client
    Best Execution of Digital Advertising for a Client
    Best Execution of Native Advertising for a Client
    Best Execution of Integrated Advertising for a Client
    Best Innovation for an Advertising Client

    Marketing Categories
    Best Trade Marketing Campaign
    Best Consumer Brand Campaign
    Best Subscriber Acquisition Campaign
    Best Community of Social-Purpose Initiative

    Product Innovation Categories
    Best Use of Print
    Best Use of Digital
    Best Use of Mobile
    Innovation of the Year

    Photography Categories
    Portrait, Feature or Lifestyle photography
    Sport Photography
    News Photography
    Photographic Essay

    Technical Categories
    Best Run of Press
    Print Centre of the Year

    Executive Excellence Categories
    Hegarty Scholarship for Best Young Executive (under 35)
    News Media Executive of the Year

    For further information, click here.


  • Paper recycling crisis to hit ratepayers

    State governments and local councils are scrambling to deal with a looming recycling crisis following an import ban on recycled paper and plastic by China. In the latest edition of industry bible Pulp & Paper Edge, paper and board recovery and recycling strategist Steve Balmforth provides this ‘state of play’ update on Australia’s recovery and recycling challenges.

    Former Norske Skog executive Steve Balmford.


    A month on from the announcement that the Victorian Government would provide $A13 million in temporary relief funding to address the recycling crisis, the New South Wales Government announced a package up to $A47 million for the same purpose.

    The aim of the funding – in both states – is to support the continuation of recyclable collection services, following the quality-related import ban by China on selected recycled paper and plastic commodities.

    In Victoria, of the funds made available, $A12 million has been set aside to assist local councils. Expressions of interest closed on March 16th. It is understood almost all councils participated. And why wouldn’t they!

    The remaining $A1 million is earmarked to assist industry to adjust to the new market conditions.

    In New South Wales, the funding will be used for similar purposes but includes a $A9.5 million allocation for industry and local government to co-invest in improving the quality of recycling materials.

    In Victoria, the major receivers of recyclables – Visy, SKM and Polytrade – have been in regular discussion with the State Government and Sustainability Victoria. Some form of agreement appears to have been reached, on the per tonne funding available from the rescue package.

    ‘Gate fees’ (prices charged to accept recyclables) are reportedly in a range from $A70 – $A150 per tonne.

    Back of the envelope calculations assume each MRF (Materials Recycling Facility) operator receives around 3,000 tonnes per week of recyclables. So, for three months, at an average $A110 per tonne, that would amount to approximately 108,000 tonnes of material, at a cost of $A11.880 million.

    To complicate matters further, recent announcements state that the government rebate rate will be capped at $A55-60 per tonne.

    The $A12 million funding is only until the end of June. From that time onward, the full cost responsibilities are to be managed by local governments. Significant rates increases are expected.

    In NSW, the WMAA (Waste Management Association of Australia) and WCRA (Waste Contractors and Recyclers Association) have been driving action, organising meetings and proposing guidelines. They have provided advice to their members on how to address the Chinese bans.

    Until the funding was announced, the situation was set to escalate in NSW. Fourteen councils are considering ceasing recyclable collection over the next two weeks.

    Stockpiling has commenced in some regions. Unless there is concerted effort to deliver long-term solutions, this will cause its own problems. The NSW EPA will consider temporary stockpile limit increases.

    Regardless of the temporary and one-off funding, it appears local governments, and ultimately ratepayers, will be faced with increased recycling costs to cover the shortfall, from the end of June 2018.

    This is a nationally important issue. Although other states have been proactive in dialogue with the waste industry and with councils, there is still no national approach to this solvable problem, although as every day passes, more national uniformity is slowly forming.

    A job for the Federal Environment Minister seems inevitable.

    The bottom line? Funding support in Victoria and NSW is intended to ensure recyclable collections continue. But the funding will quickly run out, meaning ratepayers will foot the bill, until and unless some innovations and improvements are introduced to the recycling supply chain.

    Steve Balmforth is principal of Steve Balmforth & Associates. Steve can be contacted at


  • Paper prices pose a critical challenge: APIA

    The printing industry’s response to an unprecedented surge in pulp and paper prices will be critical to maintaining profitable print volumes, according to the Australasian Paper Industry Association (APIA).

    Local paper merchants have been caught flatfooted by the speed and scale of pulp and paper price rises around the world over the past four years, with some companies now being forced to increase their prices every three months.

    ‘How the industry responds will be critical’: Kellie Northwood, executive director, APIA.

    “Our industry must work in partnership with our customers to assist in the understanding of the price increases, as well as explore opportunities for our customers to innovate their paper usage and cost structures,” says Kellie Northwood, executive director, APIA – whose members include major players Ball & Doggett, Spicers, Direct Paper, Australian Paper, Norske Skog, Sappi, Connect Paper and others. “We are working with retailers and print buyers to provide detail on the increases, the reasons for the increases and also developing for our members a ‘ready reckoner’ of sorts to review grammages, pagination, size and more to develop solutions for their customers. If any printer needs access to our FAQs and Summary of the increases, we offer our every assistance.

    “Retailers with large investment in print marketing channels are watching this space closely and how the industry responds will be critical to holding stable, and yes profitable, print volumes.” 

    APIA says the paper, print and mail industry employs 241,000 people, mainly made up of small to medium sized Australian businesses.

    “The paper sector is a key raw material supplier to the print industry and we need to understand the global issues as well as communicate clearly to our customers,” Northwood says. “Print marketing remains a strong advertising channel for all brands. Retailers, in particular, increased their investment in 2016 with an increased volume recorded across circulation and pagination for catalogue and print advertising. The price increases are being discussed with retailers who are facing their own challenges, however, with one of the highest audience reaches and a strong ROI over other channels, we do not expect the moderate price increases to impact the channel too adversely on volumes if managed with transparency.”

    The banning of mixed paper imports and the closure of polluting pulp mills in China, as well as import/export exchange rates and supply/demand ratio shifts are just a few of the factors driving the rise in prices.

    The increases have not come as a shock to the paper sector, says John Walker, the chairman of the APIA. “In 2016 to 2017 we saw a significant downsizing of paper production globally. As economics go, when demand outweighs supply, prices go up and vice versa. The industry has enjoyed paper price declines for some years, however the market is now correcting. The pressure from the overseas mills and the industry must pass on the price increases to ensure sustainability of the sector.”

    The message is clear, says Northwood: “Paper price increases are going ahead and printers will need to work closer than ever with not only their supply chain but also their customers.”

  • Government backs bio-based solvent project

    Norske Skog’s Boyer Mill in Tasmania.

    The Federal Government is investing $1.5 million in Norske Skog’s plan to develop a world-first ‘green’ alternative to fossil-fuel-based solvents at its Boyer Mill in Tasmania.

    ‘Another very important step’: Rod Bender, Norske Skog.

    The Norwegian-owned newsprint maker and Melbourne-based chemical technology R&D company Circa Group – headed by well-known industry identity Tony Duncan – are building a commercial demonstration plant at Boyer for Cyrene, a non-toxic and cleaner alternative to conventional solvents. Certified plantation softwood will be used to produce the bio-solvent.

    “Australia has the opportunity to establish a completely new biochemical industry based on renewable forestry resources and today’s announcement will help maintain the Cyrene project’s first mover status,” says Rod Bender, Norske Skog’s vice president of renewables and business development.

    “Cyrene is an environmentally friendly, sustainably produced solvent that has the potential to replace fossil fuel based solvents that are currently used in the pharmaceutical and agrichemical industries around the world. We are very proud of the work being done at the Boyer Mill in conjunction with our joint venture partner, Circa Group, to commercialise the production of Cyrene. Today’s announcement is another very important step.”

    ‘Greatly appreciated’: Tony Duncan, CEO Circa Group.

    The Federal Government’s funding will support a feasibility study for the project’s next stage scale-up, which is being designed to produce 5,000 tonnes of biomass-derived chemical levoglucosenone and Cyrene from waste sawdust. The Tasmanian Government has also pledged $1.5 million towards the project.

    “Everyone associated with the project is rightly proud of the pioneering work being done at Boyer to build and commission FC5 – our prototype commercial plant,” says Circa Group CEO Tony Duncan. “The support offered by the Federal Government and the support already being provided by the Tasmanian Government is greatly appreciated.”

    In 2017, Cyrene was recognised as the ‘Bio-based Chemical Innovation of the Year’ at the Bio Based World Innovation Awards in Amsterdam, and was recognised on the UK’s top 10 biochemical opportunities listing. 

    “These global awards highlight the potential for Cyrene to replace the toxic solvents currently in use with a long-awaited environmentally friendly and sustainable alternative,” says Bender. “This has been reinforced with more than 100 trial orders received from across Europe, North America, China and Australia – many from high tech companies and groups working in specialty composites, advanced polymers and pharma.”

  • A week left for NZ Pride in Print entries

    There’s just one week left until the close of regular entries for the 25th annual Pride in Print Awards in New Zealand.

    “This is the opportunity for the industry to highlight the phenomenal work being produced by New Zealand printers annually for customers,” says awards manager Sue Archibald. “It is in the commercial marketplace where Pride In Print delivers its greatest tangible reward – opening the eyes of print buyers to the possibilities print can offer.”

    Each sector of the industry is covered, with expert panels of judges analysing every entry. Judging is based on technical excellence in all facets of the production process and allows specialists to make judgements based on the potential and the limits of processes, and the materials and equipment used. Elements of typography and good design are part of this judgement, as is the effective and innovative use of materials.

    Regular entries must be in by Wednesday, 31 January, and after that a late fee applies.

    Entry information can be found on the Pride in Print website. You can download the digital entry form, enter online ($65 per entry) or contact patrons or sponsors for physical entry forms.

    Sponsors include: Avery Dennison, B&F Papers, BJ Ball Papers, Canon Professional Print, Currie Group (NZ), DIC New Zealand, Flint Group, HP Indigo, hubergroup New Zealand, Kurz New Zealand, Leach Print & Bindery Solutions, OPTI-Flex, Ricoh New Zealand and UPM Raflatac. Patrons are: APM New Zealand, Fuji Xerox, Fujifilm NZ Limited, Norske Skog and Spicers.

    If you have any queries, email Lauren on or call 04 237 0482.

    The 25th Pride In Print Awards will be held on Friday 11th May at SKYCITY Auckland, Victoria Street & Federal Street, Auckland 1010.

    Pride in Print 2017

  • Tasmanian printers back Holmesglen plan

    ‘Fantastic support’: Robert Black from Holmesglen TAFE at the Tasmanian Printing Convention.

    Print companies in Tasmania have overwhelmingly backed a plan by Victoria-based Holmesglen TAFE to provide a new apprenticeship training model in the state.

    The issue of industry training was on top of the agenda at the PIAA’s inaugural Tasmanian Printing Convention held in Ross on Friday.

    “We received absolutely fantastic support from local printing companies for our proposal,” says Robert Black, programme manager (printing), Holmesglen TAFE, who was a guest speaker at the event.

    Holmesglen TAFE recently made a formal application to the Tasmanian government to deliver printing apprenticeship training in the state when the existing program run by TAFE SA ends in the new year.

    “We’re proposing the same kind of training we’ve developed in Victoria,” says Black. “It’s a blended model that includes a balanced approach between on-the-job and structured training that is focused on the individual needs of printing companies. The support we received at the convention was overwhelming.”

    (l-r) Peter Clark (PIAA Board) with Craig Pearce (Flying Colours Printing) at the TPC in Ross.

    Andrew Macaulay, CEO of Printing Industries, also a guest speaker at the event, says the convention delivered a strong message that the association should continue its focus on vocational education and training.  “The inclusion of a current and recently qualified apprentice in the meeting enabled considerable insight. We really value the at-times robust discussion and input from a wide variety of business representatives from all over Tasmania. It was apparent how much local industry want to support our advocacy initiatives, and are prepared to assist in whatever way possible.”

    Macaulay last month described the apprenticeship system as being ‘in crisis,’ after data from the Productivity Commission revealed that total apprenticeships in Australia have fallen from 500,000 to 275,000 over the last five years.

    A print room at Holmesglen TAFE in Victoria.

    Black is now waiting to hear from the Tasmania government on the Holmesglen proposal. “We’re not sure when the decision will be made but we’re hoping for a positive outcome. We have the capacity to deliver quality training to the companies and to the apprentices, and we believe we have the full support of the industry.”

    At the inaugural Tasmanian Printing Convention – (l-r) Shane Brooks (Fairfax), Martin Guilliamse (Mark Media), and Gary Nilsson (Mercury Walch).

    The convention agenda included apprenticeship training, as well as book printing, industrial relations and the national and state print awards.

    At the TPC – (l-r) Michelle Smith (Norske Skog) Mitche Fenner (Fairfax) Ben Holland (Fairfax).





  • Paper/paperboard production up 72,000 tonnes

    Australia’s production of paper and paperboard rose more than 72,000 tonnes or 2.0% in the year-ended June 2017, according to latest analysis in the annual Pulp & Paper Strategic Review.

    “Three of the four major production grades experienced growth across the year, but in volume terms, the largest rise was achieved for Packaging & Industrial papers, where Containerboard Materials (Kraftliner, Testliner and Corrugating Medium) continued their strong production growth, fuelled by a potent mix of strong domestic demand, integrated export opportunities to North America and emerging supply shortages across the Asia Pacific region,” says Tim Woods, MD of publisher IndustryEdge.

    “The Strategic Review demonstrates that production of Kraftliner (by Australian Paper and Visy) for example, rose 3.7% compared with a year earlier and rose for the eighth successive year. Visy and ASX listed Orora also lifted their production of Recycled Liner (Testliner) and Corrugating Medium.”

    Production of Printing & Communication papers (other than Newsprint), including copy paper and catalogue paper, rose more than 24,000 tonnes, with increased production recorded for grades produced by both Australian Paper and Norske Skog.

    Tissue production, led by Kimberly-Clark Australia, ABC Tissue and ASX listed Asaleo Care, rose by greater than 9,000 tonnes for the year, reaching levels not seen since 2009-10.

    Over the same period – the 2016-17 financial year – New Zealand production rose more than 19,000 tonnes (2.7%), supported almost entirely by stronger production of Packaging & Industrial grades.

    A surge in newsprint exports to India pushed Australian exports of paper and paperboard to a new record of 1.211 million tonnes in the last financial year.

    These matters and others are covered in detail in the 26th annual edition of the Pulp & Paper Strategic Review. Subscribe here.


  • Fairfax and News split top PANPA awards

    News Corp Australia’s The Australian has taken the Daily Newspaper of the Year award while Fairfax Media’s Australian Financial Review won the Digital News Site of the Year at the annual PANPAs. The Print Centre of the Year was Fairfax’s Canberra Print Centre.

    The 2017 Newspaper of the Year Awards, known as the PANPAs, recognise excellence in news media publishing in print and online, photography, environmental initiatives and production.  This year’s awards, sponsored by Norske Skog, attracted a higher number of entries than previous years from publishers across Australia, New Zealand, the South Pacific and Asia. More than 300 people attended the awards ceremony, which was hosted by The Chaser’s Craig Reucassel and Andrew Hansen at the conclusion of the INFORM News Media Summit at the International Convention Centre in Sydney.

    “I would like to congratulate all this year’s Newspaper of the Year award winners and acknowledge the incredibly high standard of the region’s print and digital news content, as well as photography, design and technical excellence,” said NewsMediaWorks CEO, Peter Miller. “Our news media brands can stand tall as among the best in the world and this year’s award winners again showed outstanding excellence in each category.”

    2017 The Newspaper of the Year Awards – Winners



    The Australian, News Corp Australia


    Newcastle Herald, Fairfax Media


    The Gympie Times, News Corp Australia 


    The Weekend Australian, News Corp Australia


    National / Metropolitan 

    Australian Financial Review, Fairfax Media


    Newcastle Herald, Fairfax Media


    The Maitland Mercury, Fairfax Media



    The City, News Corp Australia


    Queensland Country Life, Fairfax Media




    Of The Sea, Wesley Monts, Herbert River Express, News Corp Australia


    Snake Boy, Glenn Hampson, Gold Coast Bulletin, News Corp Australia

    National / Metropolitan – TIE

    Dogs and Dust, Rohan Kelly, The Sunday Telegraph, News Corp Australia

    Wild Side, Rohan Thomson, The Canberra Times, Fairfax Media



    Fire Breathing Spider, Andrew Ritchie, Western Suburbs Weekly, Community News Group


    Nice for a dip, Brendan Radke, Cairns Post, News Corp Australia 

    National / Metropolitan 

    Lionheart Leo, Sam Ruttyn, The Sunday Telegraph, News Corp Australia



    Ray Karaitiana, Marta Juanola, Mandurah Mail, Fairfax Media 


    Para-swimmer, Stephen Parker, Rotorua Daily Post, NZME

    National / Metropolitan 

    Up the Mast, John Feder, The Australian, News Corp Australia



    May the Fourth Be with You, Isabella Lettini, Parramatta Sun, Fairfax Media


    Festival Aftermath, Justin Kennedy, NT News, News Corp Australia

    National / Metropolitan 

    Philippine Drug Wars, Kate Geraghty, The Sydney Morning Herald, Fairfax Media


    Wasp Wipeout, Nelson Mail, Fairfax Media




    Sharp Daily, Taiwan – Apple Daily Publication Development Limited, Taiwan Branch


    Apple Daily, Taiwan – Apple Daily Publication Development Limited, Taiwan Branch

    National / Metropolitan 

    Apple Daily Hong Kong – Apple Daily Printing Limited



    The Yass Tribune, Canberra Print Centre, Fairfax Media


    The Land, North Richmond Print Centre, Fairfax Media

    National / Metropolitan 

    The Australian, Chullora Print Centre, News Corp Australia


    Off the Leash, Darwin Print Centre, News Corp Australia


    Canberra Print Centre, Fairfax Media


    Emily Sweet, Australian Community Media, Fairfax Media


    Best Mobile Site (Open) 

    The Australian, News Corp Australia

    Best Niche / Specialty App or Microsite (Open) 

    China’s Operation Australia,, Fairfax Media

    Digital Publishing Innovation of the Year (Open) 

    Private Business, Public Failure, Stuff Circuit,, Fairfax Media



  • IVE and PMP big winners at ACA awards

    Industry leaders PMP and IVE Group’s Franklin Web took home major awards at the 26th annual Australasian Catalogue Association (ACA) awards event held at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre.

    With a record attendance of 734 guests, the room was filled with retailers, creatives, agencies, printers and distributors.

    “The ACA awards night showcases the best our industry has to offer and, together in one room, we all recognise we are really working in one industry,” said ACA CEO Kellie Northwood. “These awards are part of our plan to remain committed to working with our partners, retailers and agencies, to continue delivering powerful, agile and responsive print marketing campaigns that form a solid foundation to the overall campaigns being executed.”

    Franklin Web (an IVE business) printed Boating, Camping and Fishing’s ‘Camp Couture’ – The Winter Fashion Collection catalogue that took home the Judge’s Choice award and the Catalogue Retailer of the Year – over 3.5m award.

    PMP Limited printed both David Jones’ AW17 Brand Book Two – winner of the Catalogue Retailer of the Year – up to 1.5m – and Myer’s Remember When catalogue – winner of the ‘up to 3.5m’ category.

    Other printers who took home awards included:

    Printgraphics for the Nali catalogue ‘New Australian Design Catalogue’ in the Home category for ‘Furniture, Bedding and Manchester’;

    Finsbury Green for Officeworks’ ‘Little ones now have a bigger and better range to learn with’ in the B2C category ‘Office Supplies’;

    and Rawson Print Co for Defence Housing Australia’s ‘Arkadia’ in the B2C category ‘Real Estate and Property’.

    “These awards are a testament to the strength and adaptability of the print industry, said Phil Taylor, CEO Franklin WEB. “We love the ACA Awards and enjoy being part this event filled with our customers and industry colleagues.”

    ACA deputy chairman and CEO, Digital and Distribution, PMP Limited, Kevin Slaven, said: “New approaches are being implemented such as embracing digital technologies to work alongside print. Brands are turning towards personalising their content, introducing customised pagination and targeted circulation to build membership, retain loyalty and increase the Path to Purchase journey among consumers. This is a new era of campaigning and we are all learning the important role print will play in the mix.”

    Major Australasian Catalogue Awards Winners and Finalists:

     Agency of the Year (Sponsored by Fairfax Media)
 Winner TBWA Sydney & Maud / PMP Limited
 Finalists Clemenger BBDO, AJF Partnership, and Plump + Spry

    Best Young Designer (Sponsored by Sierra Delta and PMP Limited)
 Winners Zoran Serovski and Kathrina Mabilangan of Chemist Warehouse / Franklin WEB (an IVE business) Finalists Kate Cochrane of Kmart, Emma Borlase of Target, and Jasmine Holm of TBWA Sydney & Maud

    Best Young Talent (sponsored by Stora Enso) Winner Leah Mammoliti of Redhanded / PMP Limited
 Finalists Natalie McAdam of Kmart, Genevieve Blackman of Dan Murphy’s and Hannah Toole of Target

    Judge’s Choice (sponsored by PMP Limited)
 Winner BCF – Boating, Camping and Fishing – ‘Camp Couture’ produced by Clemenger BBDO / Franklin WEB (an IVE business) 
FinalistsKathmandu – ‘The Summit’ produced by Kathmandu In-House Team / Franklin WEB (an IVE business)
The Kitchens – ‘The Kitchens Autumn 2017’ produced by Plump + Spry / PMP Limited
Kidstuff – ‘Play Summer/Autumn 2017’ produced by Born and Raised / Misc.

    Catalogue Retailer of the Year – up to 1.5m (sponsored by Norske Skog)
 Winner David Jones – ‘AW17 Brand Book Two’ produced by TBWA Sydney & Maud / PMP Limited
 FinalistsMyer – ‘Remember When’ produced by Clemenger BBDO / PMP Limited
BCF – Boating, Camping and Fishing – ‘Camp Couture’ produced by Clemenger BBDO and BCF In-House Team / Franklin WEB (an IVE business)
Kathmandu – ‘The Summit’ produced by Kathmandu In-House Team / Franklin WEB (an IVE business)

    Catalogue Retailer of the Year – up to 3.5m (sponsored by Norske Skog)
 Winner Myer – ‘Remember When’ produced by Clemenger BBDO / PMP Limited FinalistsOfficeworks – ‘Inspire Their Imagination’ produced by AJF Partnership / PMP Limited Harvey Norman – ‘It’s All For Mum’ produced by GP Advertising / PMP Limited Domayne – ‘The Outdoor Collection’ produced by GP Advertising / PMP Limited

    Catalogue Retailer of the Year – over 3.5m (sponsored by Norske Skog)
 Winner BCF – Boating, Camping and Fishing – ‘Camp Couture’ produced by Clemenger BBDO / Franklin WEB (an IVE business) 
FinalistsKathmandu – ‘The Summit’ produced by Kathmandu In-House Team / Franklin WEB (an IVE business)
The Kitchens – ‘The Kitchens Autumn 2017’ produced by Plump + Spry / PMP Limited
Kidstuff ‘Play Summer/Autumn 2017’ produced by Born and Raised / Misc.

    For a full listing of Winners and Finalists go to