Gems of Paper

When holding an ice-cold beverage in your hand, do you think about the label on the bottle? Not the brand or what the label says but the unnoticed “gem” of paper—the label? Probably not. Yet right there in your hand is an innovative solution to an industry-specific challenge, a specially engineered paper created to withstand wetness.

Cheering with the crowd, rooting for your favorite team, your mind is likely not on Glatfelter’s New Product Development groups located across global facilities, right? Or the FDA-compliant paper containers that your hot dog, French fries, popcorn, and snow cone were served in, created by the NPD groups? Probably not.

When standing in the paint aisle at your local home store, eagle-eyeing the minute differences between “Baby Blue” and “Robin’s Egg Blue,” you probably aren’t thinking about the behind-the-scenes team of “gems” who engineered paper durable enough to hold paint, not printed ink, to allow customers true color choices.

And when a package arrives at the door to your home, you likely rip it open and enjoy the contents, hardly glancing at the shipping label that ensured your package arrived (never even contemplating the ingenious release liner paper from which your label was peeled.)

Niche applications and industry-specific challenges require one-of-a-kind product solutions, and engineered and specialty papers are often the basis of the answers. We forget to marvel at the “gems” of the paper industry the creative paper products and the scientists, engineers, and inventors who’ve created the specialty products. How can we remember to do so? Ahh, of course! Write it down on a sticky note, and post the reminder where it’s easily seen. (Sticky notes sure are handy little gems, too, aren’t they?)