More consumable surcharges announced

Jo Francis
Thursday, April 15, 2021

Two more suppliers of key industry consumable products have been forced to announce price surcharges because of spiralling raw material and shipping costs.

Huber Group: pressure has increased sharply and created significant challenges
Huber Group: pressure has increased sharply and created significant challenges

Kodak executive chairman and CEO Jim Continenza has written to customers details how the manufacturer is facing “soaring” costs for aluminium, energy and packaging materials, along with “sharply rising freight rates because of global logistics constraints”.

“Despite internal cost reductions, the magnitude of these rising costs is no longer sustainable. In order to continue producing world-class products it is necessary for Kodak to pass along some of these increased costs,” Continenza stated.
Like Agfa’s European business, Kodak is planning to implement a surcharge which will be kept under review. 

Printweek understands the surcharge is 0.2p per square metre of plate, but his has not been officially confirmed. 

“This is a carefully considered and necessary decision which we do not take lightly. We will review and adjust this surcharge periodically and keep you informed of changes,” he said, and pointed out that it would also be partially offset by higher recycling prices for used plates. 

Of the big three plate makers, Fujifilm is yet to make an announcement although Printweek understands it is in the process of deciding how to approach the situation. 

Separately, ink maker Huber Group has announced a temporary surcharge across a range of its sheetfed litho and UV offset products, effective from 1 May. 

The firm cited significant prices rises in raw materials including linseed oils, acrylates, styrenes and various pigments, as well as ballooning freight costs because of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The surcharge per kilo ranges from 11p to 54p depending on the product, with UV inks subject to the higher rate. 

Huber Group has posted a statement on its website explaining the pressures it is experiencing. 

“Since the beginning of 2021 the pressure on ink manufacturers has once again increased sharply and created significant challenges. The entire value chain is affected by a shortage of raw materials along with shipping containers,” it said.

“The combination of these factors has a direct impact on hubergroup's cost situation. We are working intensively to minimize the impact of those cost increases by leveraging our global supply network, checking on different sourcing methods and the use of alternative raw materials. However, there is no alternative scenario for the tense sea container situation and the cost increase [is] thus unavoidable.”

The firm said it would analyse the precise impact on individual products and contact customers when price increases became inevitable. 

The industry is currently experiencing a raft of price increases and surcharges across inks, plates and paper as key manufacturers battle a rising tide of input costs. 

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