3 Things You’ve Never Considered About Paper

May 09, 2023

Paper is just paper, right? Well, not quite. Paper is an essential part of our lives, providing us with the ability to express ideas, organize thoughts, and communicate with others. The role it plays is big, but smaller details can often be overlooked. From where it’s made to how it’s stored, here are three things to consider to get the most out of your paper.

Not all papers are created equal.

When choosing paper, it’s important to consider where it comes from. United States-based paper manufacturers, like Boise Paper, not only adhere to rigorous quality and manufacturing standards, but also follow strict U.S. labor standards and laws that aren’t always present in other countries. Additionally, manufacturers in the U.S. must acquire and maintain specific certifications such as those from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) and Forestry Standard Council (FSC), to ensure that products are sourced from sustainably managed forests.

Storing paper correctly means better performance.

Correct paper storage is essential to maintain the quality and printability of your paper. It’s important to acclimate paper by placing it in a climate-controlled room for 24-48 hours prior to use. The ideal temperature range to maintain the paper’s moisture content, weight, and other physical characteristics is 70-75° F with 40-50% humidity. After acclimation, the paper should be stored on a flat, elevated space such as a shelf or pallet, and not on concrete, or in areas with frequent air exchanges like hallways or windows. Also keeping paper in the original packaging until it goes in the printer will prevent damage. These paper storage steps will help prevent changes to the moisture content of the paper, which in turn will help prevent paper jams.

Choosing the right paper makes all the difference.

Paper is designed with different weights, brightness, and shades for different uses. Heavier weight papers provide more durability and stiffness, and less opacity for important documents, like reports and presentations. Generally, 20 lb. paper is used for every day, internal projects, and 24 lb. or greater papers are used for higher profile, external use. The brighter the paper, the greater the contrast between the printed image and the paper, making print appear sharper. Most office papers are between 92 and 98 on the brightness scale, with 92 being used more often for internal documents, and the higher end of the scale used for outside clients and documents. Even two papers with the same brightness may differ in shade. Paper with more blue looks brighter and whiter to the human eye, while paper with more yellow leaves a softer, creamier impression. Next time you’re looking for office paper, ask yourself what the paper will be used for, and which paper will help you get the desired look and

Consider these sometimes-overlooked factors the next time you want quality paper to create, express, or communicate.

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