The prolonged strike at Finnish paper supplier UPM is finally over. A new collective bargaining deal was signed, and the mills, idle since January 1, have started up again. Europe's 'sticker world' can, thus, breathe a sigh of relief. OPM employees immediately returned to work, and the company will resume deliveries to its customers as soon as possible. But much is still uncertain.
We previously reported that 80% of the Glassine paper used for labels on the European market comes from Finland. "The factory was closed for four months, so it's not easy to get it up and running again," says a large fruit and vegetable product label printer. "Then there's the question of whether 100% of the staff has returned and whether they can get back to full production right away again. You're four months behind, so delivery times still aren't good."
The strike caused considerable panic, and its end brought the prospect of improvement. "But it'll be a good few months before delivery times will be what they were before the strike. We hope the delivery confirmations we received for, say, only November will now slowly begin to move forward. However, things will become clearer in the coming weeks."