Project Profile: Honeybee Wraps

Early this year RPCo. was tasked with producing a print packaging solution for exciting eco-friendly packaging product, Honeybee Wraps. With environmental sustainability at the core of the Australian-based client’s ethos, our team helped to move manufacturing from Sri Lanka to back on home shores. Business development manager, Cameron Woodbury explains…

What was Honeybee’s brief to the RPCo. team?
Honeybee Wraps was launching a new product range that would be sold in Woolworths stores throughout NSW.

Production of its existing packaging was offshore (Sri Lanka) but the client wanted to find an Australian manufacturing partner that could provide a cost efficient and reliable manufacturing process.

Its existing manufacturing process required eight to 12 weeks, from order to delivery.

Environmental sustainability is a core belief of the Honeybee Wraps team, so any offering had to reflect this.

What was your deadline turnaround?
We had four to six weeks to turn the project around.

What print production method did you recommend?
Due to the quantity requirement, offset production was the only way to proceed.

Environmental sustainability was one of the most important aspects of my discussions with Honeybee Wraps owner Sherrie Adams so we made sure that all inks used were soy and vegetable based, and that the glue used for carton assembly was vegetable based too.

What was the highlight of working with Honeybee?
Working with a small Australian family-owned business that is on a growth trajectory to improve its market share and bring a new product to market.

We were also introduced to cutting-edge market technologies in the environmental sustainability space. We are now investigating how to implement these into our future orders.

How did RPCo. assist in providing a truly Australian made product?
By working alongside an Australian print manufacturer (RPCo.) Honeybee Wraps was able to ensure that another aspect of its product offering was produced in Australia.

How did you manage to successfully reshore Honeybee’s print production?
Despite Australian production being more expensive than offshore manufacturing, the combination of shorter production times, greater production control, improved environmental impact, in conjunction with encouraging local manufacturing, we were able to surpass the cost barriers.

If you would like to know more about this project or discuss your own project needs – please feel free to contact Cameron.

Made In Australia: Local Print Decreases Risks

Made In Australia: Local print increases sustainability and de-risks the supply chain

The past 12 months have been tumultuous for businesses and individuals alike, from the 2019-20 bushfire season to the worldwide disruption caused by the COVID-19 global pandemic. Through efforts like Buy from the Bush, many Australian consumers are seeking to support the local economy and turning their purchasing decisions towards Australian Made products and services. Local print and packaging manufactures have benefited from the surge in demand for locally sourced options, with clients motivated to take back control of their production processes.

According to Rawson Print Co. (RPCo.) director Lachlan Finch, the major benefits of printing in Australia include: greater quality control, improved speed to market and elevated production visibility, along with an absence of the risks inherent when dealing with international embargoes, such as those imposed by China.

“Partnering with a local print and packaging manufacturer enables companies to unlock greater value. The modern printer is a value-oriented service provider; cost is just one piece of the puzzle, we need to be agile, flexible and simultaneously operate as brand guardians who see beyond the ink on a sheet,” says Finch.

“Once all factors such as freight, production, logistics and communication issues are combined, we have proven time and again that local production is not only more reliable and environmentally sound, but can also be more cost effective to ‘cheap’ offshore production.”

One of the largest publicly listed companies in Australia, Domino’s, has thrown its support behind local printing by embracing the ‘Proudly Printed in Australia’ logo for all of its print collateral, and has commenced using it on millions of print pieces.

In a recent article featured in Print 21, Domino’s Chief Marketing Officer ANZ Allan Collins said the pizza giant supported ‘Proudly Printed in Australia’ because of its belief in local manufacturing. The decision was made as Domino’s sought new ways of reducing its carbon footprint and resource consumption, seeking sustainability while also supporting local manufacturing.

Not only a benefit for the environment, printing in Australia is arguably also better for business, reducing costs for local clients and franchisees.

With international travel bans and enforced border lockdowns unlikely to ease anytime soon, Finch at RPCo. says good business and local production go hand in hand; an opinion also shared by Andrew Macaulay, the Chief Executive of the printing industry’s peak body, the Print & Visual Communication Association.

In an article by Australian Manufacturing, Macaulay asserts that COVID-19 has exposed the vulnerability of international supply chains, prompting many companies to return their print production to Australia: ‘With COVID-19, we’re seeing an attack on the Australian economy and the realisation that our supply chains are high-risk, because we’ve moved so much manufacturing overseas.’

The Print & Visual Communication Association has been running a ‘Buy Australian Print’ campaign for some time, which Macaulay reports has had resonance with Australians recognising the real value in domestically produced material.

Research from Australia Post lends further evidence to the idea that Australian consumers have a desire to support local.

In a recent Omnibus survey by the government postal service, 30 per cent of respondents stated they’re making an effort to buy more Australian-made products than they did previously, while 23pc of shoppers said they’re more conscious about buying from businesses in their local areas.

Furthermore, when companies work with an Australian-based printer, they are also supporting a network of related local jobs, such as designers, typographers and boutique creative agencies.

Finch concludes: “Along with the many benefits to clients, in these uncertain times printing locally provides a much-needed, positive flow-on effect to the local creative community. It’s a community that we are very proud to support.”

Seven Tips to Source Your Partner In Print

Seven Tips to Source Your Partner In Print

When first impressions count, an exceptional print production company is a powerful ally in helping to make your product or service stand out from the crowd. When searching for a printer, here are some of Rawson Print Co.’s most important tips to consider for your business.

Do your homework… With a high level of competition in commercial printing services, the more research you do about the production capabilities of your printer and the standard of quality that they are proven to produce, the more likely you are to achieve a partnership aligned with your own expectations for your product.

An obvious but sometimes overlooked focus of your research should be on the production portfolio and customer service history of your printer. Potential clients can request the commercial printer’s portfolio and this will provide a good overview of the printer’s capabilities, while looking at existing physical samples in the market will provide a tangible indication of the quality you can expect.

Make sure you are working with a subject matter expert who specialises in your specific needs.

Are they really listening? An essential consideration is the level of client support and engagement your printer is able to offer once the reassuring sales pitch has concluded. Do they have an informed understanding of your business and your priorities?

Consistent, clear and reciprocal communication with your printing partner is key to maintaining quality control. When job specifications change at short notice, an established and responsive relationship is crucial.

Some printing services may be unable to offer the detailed level of support that your business requires, meaning this should be a key factor in making your decision.

Can they help bang the drum? As part of their consultancy, many printers can offer advice on designing your product to optimise market penetration. While this can be as basic as advising on layout, text and colour, some printing services feature an in-house marketing department to discuss and develop your publicity targets. Many printers will also have existing relationships with trusted graphic design services and can provide valuable recommendations.

Are they the person you want beside you in a crisis? Acknowledging that the luxury of lead-time is not always a reality, it is extremely important to have confidence in your printer’s ability to meet evolving requirements. Do they have the capacity to deliver in an emergency?

What turnaround times can they guarantee for proofs already on file, or for designs not yet in the system? While they may be able to deliver a consistent level of quality and speed of delivery for scheduled work, how effectively can they respond to the unanticipated scenarios inherent to your business needs?

Are you working directly with the manufacturer? Quite often customers think they are dealing directly with the manufacturer, only to find out that their product has been subcontracted to another company, or worst still, sent offshore to another country. Dealing directly with a company who actually produces the product ensures you have much better control over quality control and delivery times, and communication is not lost in translation.    

Are they the right flexible friend? As important as flexibility of turnaround time is the ability of your printer to adapt to both the changing market environment and to the evolving requirements of your brief. A key assessment to make of any printing service is can they offer the flexibility required for you to meet changing conditions, such as a reduced budget?

Do they have the supplier relationships that could possibly negotiate alternative and more affordable print stock? Do they have storage available for back-up inventory with overprinting or pick, pack and distribution services? Can they deliver a cheaper product, an expanded run, or a product customised to a specific audience or promotion while still maintaining an acceptable level of brand consistency?

Depending on the job at hand, your decision on which printer to partner with can often come down to the project itself. For example, a long run catalogue printer is certainly not the right choice for your bespoke property book, or asking an instant printer to manage the production of your packaging cartons may not achieve the results you were looking for? Once again, invest some time into reviewing their previous projects.

Long-term relationship material? Variables such as colours, materials, finishing and pricing can all be negotiated. However, the relationship you have with your printing services provider should reflect the fact that they are essentially a key business partner.

The tone of engagement should be a mutual investment in communication, one defined by a level of care and attention that is unique to your business needs. The more collaborative and dynamic the service your printer can offer, the more effective your creative partnership will be.