Establishments in this industry are primarily engaged in die-cutting purchased paper and paperboard and in manufacturing cardboard by laminating, lining, or surface coating paperboard. Establishments primarily engaged in laminating building paper from purchased paper are classified in SIC 2679: Converted Paper and Paperboard Products, Not Elsewhere Classified.
322231 (Die-Cut Paper and Paperboard Office Supplies Manufacturing)
322292 (Surface-Coated Paperboard Manufacturing)
322298 (All Other Converted Paper Product Manufacturing)
Products in this industry classification include pasted chip board; bottle caps and tops; cardboard foundations and cutouts; pasted, laminated line and surface coated paperboard; plain paper cards; tabulating cards; die-cut paper and paperboard; egg cartons and egg case fillers and flats; and filing folders, index cards, and paperboard library cards.
The die-cut paper and paperboard industry consisted of more than 300 establishments across the United States, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The performance of the die-cut paper and board industry was erratic in the 1990s and early 2000s. The value of shipments reached an all-time high of $2.29 billion in 1991, but fell sharply the following year to $2.01 billion before recovering to $2.02 billion in 1993 and $2.24 billion in 1994. By 1997, the value of shipments had climbed modestly, to $2.87 billion. After reaching $2.35 billion in 1998, shipments declined to $2.15 billion in 1999 and then rebounded to $2.53 billion in 2000 and to $2.59 billion in 2001.
The slow or negative growth experienced by this industry reflects the fact that the market for many of its traditional products is a mature one. Also, many products produced by the industry are traditional office supplies, such as file folders, index cards, and paper rolls for business machines. Use of these products is said to be declining, in part due to the growing importance of electronic data transfer and electronic document management systems.
In 2001, die-cut paper and board office supplies accounted for 55 percent of industry shipments (by value). Within this category, file folders represented the biggest seller, followed by hanging and expandable file folders, index cards, and report covers.
The next largest category was paper supplies for business machines, which accounted for 43 percent of industry shipments in 2001. Leading products in this category were paper rolls for adding and other business machines and other unprinted paper supplies. All other products accounted for the remaining 2 percent of industry shipments in 2001.
Die-cut paper and board manufacturers tend to be located in areas where business activity is highest. As a result, industry activity is greater in such states as Illinois, California, Massachusetts, and Ohio.
This industry manufactures a wide variety of products, yet it is closely linked to the production of corrugated boxes since many of its products are used as box inserts. Also, many products are made from recycled fiber—often 100 percent recycled fiber. The desire by consumers and businesses to buy products made from recycled materials appears to have increased demand for some products from the die-cut paper and board industry.
Die-cut paper and board industry leaders tend to be independent converters; there are few major paper companies with holdings in die-cut paper and paperboard. Some of the leading companies include Esselte Pendaflex Corp. of Garden City, New York; Fleer Corp. of Mount Laurel, New Jersey; Book Covers Inc. of Newark, New Jersey; and Advertising Display Co. of Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. Chesapeake Corp. is one of the few paper companies with a large market share in this industry through its Chesapeake Display Co. in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
The die-cut paper and board industry employed a total of 13,352 employees in 2000, including 10,292 production workers. These totals were down sharply from 1992. The average hourly wage for production workers was $11.03 in 2000, up from $10.40 in 1992.
U.S. Census Bureau. "Statistics for Industry Groups and Industries: 2000." February 2002. Available from http://www.census.gov/prod/2002pubs/m00as-1.pdf .
——. "Value of Shipment for Product Classes: 2001 and Earlier Years." December 2002. Available from http://www.census.gov/prod/2003pubs/m01as-2.pdf .