Bamboo paper supplier?

I have been searching for some time now for a bamboo paper supplier either here in the States or overseas who I can work with to import in. I’m having no luck and figured I’d post here to see a. if anyone has ever printed on bamboo paper & if so, where they go it and b. any leads/ideas/tips on where to go next with this search. Neenah has a 50/50 bamboo/PCF paper but that’s as close as I’ve found. Hours on Google has not turned up anything that is 100% bamboo. I’m willing to work directly with a paper mill, just not sure where to start.

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This might not be at all what you are looking for (too thin maybe?) but it does seem to be all bamboo…

I am not sure where to get it…but I know who uses it…

If you happen to find out…if you wouldn’t mind…please let me know what you find.


Smock (aka the folks at Boxcar Press) have it made for them in Europe. It is beautiful thick paper. I have been looking too and can’t find anything. It would be great if the Boxcar folks would consider selling the paper to other printers. I know it makes them unique but in terms of allowing other printers to use a truly sustainable paper, it would be a great service.

I would be really interested to find these papers as well?

We rolled this bamboo paper out last month for Smock. We have been making all our (cotton) paper overseas since 2003, largely because Crane Lettra wasn’t around when we needed it. Initially we sold sheets of our “Bella Letterpress Cotton” paper to other printers, but we realized quickly that we’re printers, not paper merchants. So we went back to focusing on what is commercially viable and what can make both our clients and us happy: letterpress printing! Our bamboo paper took a long time to develop, but there’s a real market (not to mention environmental) need for a product like this. I’m sure, like Crane Lettra (which came out one year after we made our first batch of cotton paper), there will be a similar product available to everyone soon. Until then, we are attempting to recoup some of our substantial up-front development costs for this paper…proud that we’ve at least shown the possibility that bamboo paper is viable for printing.

I hope a product comes out soon… I have seen the Smock paper in person and it is gorgeous and prints beautifully. You should be so proud of yourself for leading the way. Hopefully this will inspire some of the big manufacturers to follow suit… Until then I will just have to be jealous of your paper. ;)

I’m interested in the idea of preparing bamboo pulp with a stamper mill. I’ve bought a house in Costa Rica to which I plan to retire in about a year, and the adjacent property has a lot of bamboo — it’s quite common around that area. Has anyone tried that sort of pulp preparation? A Hollander would also be a possibility.


AWAGAMI FACTORY in Japan is currently developing a few different bamboo/hemp combination papers that will go on the market in early 2009. Unfortunately100% bamboo fiber is not quite sturdy enough on its own for high quality long lasting paper and is best when mixed with a 2nd longer fiber (preferably eco-friendly!) ie.: hemp or bagasse) to compensate for its weakness.

i looked into bamboo paper this summer because i was intrigued to finding a new paper source that was more eco friendly. i started by googling “bamboo paper” and was pretty surprised by the first entry that came up (“bamboo paper is not forest friendly”). i don’t believe everything i read online, so i called big paper companies (mohawk, neenah) and smaller companies (legion, crane).

Here’s what i found about why bamboo paper is so hard to come by:

all the large commercial US paper manufacturers gave up on bamboo as a source for paper years ago because in the end it was not as eco-friendly as it sounded and it was very energy-intensive to make. It turns out that it takes a lot of harsh chemicals to break bamboo down to pulp which in the end negates any ‘green’ benefits. Also because bamboo grown in Asia, it was very expensive to ship it around the world to supply the US market. Fuel costs are now twice as high as they were than they were when commercial bamboo paper was abandoned.

Basically what i learned from everyone i spoke with was that domestically sourced recycled materials are a better, cleaner, more sustainable choice than bamboo. Bottom line - recycled paper is using things that are diverted from the waste stream and it doesn’t have to travel as far. Crane put it best - nothing new is being planted, watered and grown to make their papers. My bamboo quest ended with a new appreciation for all the green papers readily available in the US that I’ve been using all along. I encourage anyone with an interest in anything that’s being touted as the “newest and greenest” to take the same steps. In the end, we all want to be doing the right thing for the planet, but sometimes you just have to ask more questions to get to the real truth.

I have heard similar things to what Becca has reported and would like to hear from Boxcar as to the eco-friendly status of their new bamboo paper. I trust they have done their research and are creating a very friendly paper. However I imagine the fact that it is produced in Europe for an American print house is a substantial detractor to it’s green-ness. The shipping process alone must offset a considerable portion of the ‘sustainable’ aspect.

But again, I’d love to hear from Harold and the crew at Boxcar about this paper. They are making great strides in moving a eco-unfriendly craft in the other direction and I fully support those efforts. Maybe they know something we don’t about the sustainability of bamboo paper made overseas?

the bottom line is that as printers and designers, the best thing we can do is print on high post-consumer waste paper that is manufactured locally. bamboo is virgin fiber, it’s being grown specifically to be made into paper.

so let’s say you just have to have virgin paper. Shop locally, then - it’s a big country and lots of people sell paper that was made here from trees and other things that are grown here. all that fuel to take paper around the world is and touting it as green is simply wishful thinking.

Just how, exactly, is the North American paper product ‘unsubstainable’? Cellulose-based paper has been employed nearing 150 years and I’ve yet to see shortage of trees. Except, of course, where pavement has replaced wilderness; and that doing is prelude to providing housing and shelter to humans. Such area is termed: City. As for the absurd descript: “eco-unfriendly craft”, well, there’s always cuniform. Oh, wait. That would involve digging of clay and cutting of sticks. Can’t inflict such injury to this o-so- fragile planet. Now, let’s all condemn Gutenberg for setting us out upon such destructive path.
I suggest that some on this site would benefit from following Becca’s example and do some research prior to spouting nonsensical drivel. What next? Using Crisco to replace press lubricant?

I’m deleting this post in hopes of getting this thread back on track.

Following your logic(?), breathing (exhalation of carbon dioxide) is ‘eco-unfriendly’ as well. Well, there is no alternative to that exercise. Living, apparently to many, is environmentally un-friendly. Best take a look around to understand the absurdity of that thinking. Press, ink, paper. It’s not complex. But it is made so when extraneous nonsense is added to the mix.

I’m deleting this post in hopes of getting this thread back on track.

Oops… I should have realized any mention of ‘eco-friendly’ draws fire from Forme on this board. Now that I’ve looked at some of the old threads I see a theme.

Sorry guys, I didn’t mean to stir the pot.

this is so typical of letterpress discussions… it’s as if you’ve been inhaling too much solvent and then get all worked up and rant over minutiae. back to bamboo, please - the original thread, remember? kindly take your sparring off line.


Again, sorry to have stirred the pot. I don’t like the bickering either and didn’t mean to get caught up in it.

I honestly didn’t think I was being argumentative in my initial post and admit that I was a bit annoyed by Forme’s response. If anything my initial reply was in support of your findings… but I was hoping Harold might chime in giving us some details about HIS findings.

Lesson learned. I have deleted my last response to Forme to avoid more nonsense.

Like you said: back to bamboo.

I STILL want to hear from Boxcar about how they addressed production issues. Specifically overseas shipping and the harsh chemicals mentioned by Becca. Maybe Boxcar’s papermaker has methods of which we are unaware? I’m always looking to learn more and I have no doubt that Boxcar has plenty of information to share.

many thanks! i too am anxious to hear what ‘the platemakers to the world’ have to say…

Interesting to know you insights about the bamboo paper. I have heard but never got excited about it - how come? you can not find it. Don’t make sense. I have tried crane’s lettra and it prints beautifully, and the recycled papers are very good too, to me. And it can be found !

Thanks for keeping this thread going! We outline the benefits of bamboo on our Smock Paper website here. If you hit “more” you can read our take on cotton’s environmental impact.

Beyond the scenes, this paper helps us achieve our 3-year environmental goal: “All our custom letterpress paper is made with 100% organic/pesticide free fibers.” We had initially hoped to achieve this via an organic cotton paper, but there’s a reason that no one offers this: there are not enough organic cotton linters in the world to support this papermaking. When the opportunity arose to take a major a step toward achieving this 3-year goal (with pesticide-free bamboo paper), we jumped at the opportunity.

We are big fans of post-consumer recycled papers, too. At this point, we use 100% PCW paper for all office uses from office paper to office envelopes to product catalogs. We use primarily Mohawk Options and Neenah Environment 100% PCW grades for these. These serve their purpose well, but we wouldn’t expect our high-budget printing customers to appreciate their functionality. They’re looking for something more luxurious and up-market, with the softness and feel of cotton. Bamboo has a similar feel and appearance to cotton.

We appreciate that cotton linters are repurposed waste from cottonseed production. This is better than throwing them out. But our acceptance of the cotton paper status quo made us feel we were also accepting cotton’s role as the most heavily sprayed crop. We wanted to push for a less harmful alternative. I can only explain it as how a vegan person must feel when offered a leather jacket. Sure, the calfskin would have been thrown away if it wasn’t turned into a jacket—but that doesn’t mean the vegan thinks that a leather jacket is a good thing! So by promoting something different and less dependent on pesticides, we feel we’re moving the discourse in a better direction.

We acknowledge that it would be better if the bamboo grew locally and our papermill was down the street. (Truth be told, after trying in vain to keep a neighbor’s bamboo grove at bay at Boxcar Press’ old 640 Fellows Avenue address, I’m pretty glad that the bamboo isn’t local!) But seriously, we were unable to find a domestic fiber that fit our bill. Organic cotton would work, but there’s not enough. Also, no domestic papermill runs cylinder papermakers, which we feel are essential to creating soft paper with a hand-made feel. We are not making a commodity-grade paper, and needed the equipment and artisan papermaking skills of Europe. The nature of our paper requires us to transport our product around the globe, but we primarily use sea freight (low carbon emissions per pound), and we are doing whatever we can to reduce our energy usage and our carbon emissions from our wind-powered print shop. Plus we’ve helped to plant over 3,000 trees through American Forests this year to date…so we’re doing our part to offset our carbon emissions.

Regarding harmful chemicals, our paper is Totally Chlorine Free, which very few papers can claim. And I know there have been many abuses in bamboo forestry which may appear in Google, primarily in China, but our Thai bamboo comes from smaller farms and not taken from natural forests that have been turned into plantation or non-forest use.

I think that touches on most of the issues brought up in this thread. Whew! Thanks for taking this stuff so seriously!


I’m reminded of the environmentalist who, when asked how it was he commuted to work, replied: “I hitchhike; I do not believe in the automobile”!

Oh yes. To demonstrate I, too, am driving towards ‘zero’ carbon dioxide production, this month I’ve dropped some sixty or so pine trees on my property. None under 85ft; average age 100. Can’t have those polluters despoiling the atmosphere now can we? We must all do our bit in fighting the Carbon Footprint Boogeyman.


Damn. Nice to see someone push back against the BS. What a breath of fresh air.


Thank you. My annoyance stems from those who, under the guise of discussing the Black Art, slyly inject their personal agenda into the topic at hand. Then, these innocent souls take umbrage at being caught out. Such proselytizing belongs on the tin-foil hat sites where self-congratulatory nonsense has free rein. Want to discuss paper? Fine, do so. But spare the reader the straw dogs strewn by the hysterics.

These are the things that can indicate when a company is trying to use greenwash to sell its product or service, according to Futerra’s Greenwash guide. smock paper, please take note!

Futerra’s 10 signs of Greenwash (

1. Fluffy language
Words or terms with no clear meaning, e.g. “ecofriendly”.

2. Green products v dirty company
Such as efficient light bulbs made in a factory which pollutes rivers. (interesting to note that all of boxcar press plate customers fall on the wrong side of the fence when the comparison is drawn.)

3. Suggestive pictures
Green images that indicate an (unjustified) green impact eg flowers blooming from exhaust pipes. (on the smock paper website, cards are photographed out of doors in trees and on logs. and i truly hope that you did not actually haul that press out into that field to get that photograph - please please tell us it was photoshop sleight-of-hand, please?

4. Irrelevant claims
Emphasising one tiny green attribute when everything else is “ungreen”. ( smock paper uses no pesticides, just let’s not ask about those pesky fossil fuels to move the paper more than 10,000 kilometres. and could we kindly overlook the fact that a virgin crop is planted and harvested specifically for your own private use. to distract from those unsavoury bits, you plant trees, buy vegetables and give money to wind farms.)

5. Best in a bad class?
Declaring you are slightly greener than the rest, even if the rest are pretty terrible. (wood or cotton, anyone?)

6. When it’s just not credible
“Ecofriendly” cigarettes anyone? “Greening” a dangerous product doesn’t make it safe. (Ecofriendly paper is an oxymoron as anyone would attest, no matter the source - trees, bamboo, etc.)

7. Gobbledygook
Jargon and information that only a scientist could check or understand.

8. Imaginary friends
A “label” that looks like third party endorsement … except it is made up by the company itself. (smock paper belongs to co-op america’s green business network which anyone can join for a nominal fee - no questions asked.)

9. No proof
It could be right, but where’s the evidence? (hint… it’s just not right to begin with.)

10. Outright lying
Totally fabricated claims or data.

Harold, I do see your sincerity around this, but you must know that you are misinformed and your assumptions misguided. it appears your business has retained a public relations firm so with any hope they will assist in sorting this out when those outside the letterpress community come forward with similar queries. in all truth, your thinking is shot full of holes. “think globally, act locally” - that old adage applies to you too, smock!


One too many corporate marketing seminars, methinks. The consumer is a dolt, take advantage of that, etc. Adding silly green to the mix simply to sell product is saddening. From ExxonMobil on down.


” The consumer is a dolt, take advantage of that …”

That’s true. Just look at the polemics of the “green” - the average person when hears that there is a ‘ecofriendly’ product they tend to be interested. I guess they feel guilty when putting the carbage out. In the other hand, marketing or political greenished advertising move montains; it doesn’t really matter if the ecofriendlyness is real or virtual, as long it sounds good.

Getting off the topic: have you seen that now gm cars are making 38 mpgs? It happened over night … check out the new ads, there is a lot of green on them.

Suddenly green is subliminal.

Though some are annoyed, I think the digression is far more interesting than the original question of - where can i buy bamboo paper? So I give you this:

boxcarsmock didn’t answer/mention the un-eco friendly issue in regards to the production of the paper. That is: How are the cellulose fibers broken down? It is an extremely caustic process breaking down bamboo. Much moreso than cotton. It would take a lot of either Soda Ash(sodium carbonate - Na2CO3) or Lye. These are not nice products. Fields can lay fallow and with the help of compost, nutrient etc. and can become reborn, but the chemicals that a being dumped stay for a long time. Well at least that is in europe anyway.

I would be curious to see a company with such resources (like a boxcarpress) invest in the R&D of post consumer clothing. It makes a really nice sheet that works well on the letterpress. It is not as durable as a linter but we are all mostly making ephemera anyway. And, of course, we have practically an endless supply of used clothes in this country. You could probably get it for a nickel a pound from the Salvation Army. I digress.

Regarding the eco-friendly aspects of bamboo, I picked this up on Google

What is odd though is that except for a tiny blurb telling us: “What is our bamboo paper like? It’s extremely soft, luxuriously thick, and elegantly textured. It’s also perfect for letterpress.” There is nothing more said about the actual paper itself. No specs whatsover, or at least, none that I could find.

To play green ball though, I’m wondering how it is possible to ensure that the bamboo pulp that is available on the world wide market is actually acquired from these selective Thai forests? Where is the pulp processed, and are these selective paper mills as well?

—As SeaWolf suggests, it is a complicated and caustic process to break down cellulose from woody material. I worked in such a mill for several years (while a student, and as temporary labor got switched around quite a bit, so did have the opportunity to see pretty much the entirety of the operation, from lumber yard to boxing the product).—

Is this selected pulp then shipped to the European mill for final formation? I assume these are mouldmade papers? More questions generated than answered.

I assume none of this is any of our business but the site’s marketing does beg the questions.


For the OP:

There is also this, recently, from the German Hahnemühle mills


This thread is very disappointing to read on a personal level. Anyone who knows me or my wife/business partner Debbie would attest that our commitment to the environment runs very deep on a personal level.

I’ve always loved the camaraderie of the letterpress community and it’s sad to see us bickering about marketing. Let’s get back to printing and supporting each other. Printing is hard enough without the infighting.

Becca, I see you’ve been a member of this community for five days. We’d love to hear how your printshop is helping the environment. I’m sincere in this request—I think it would be a much more constructive conversation to discuss best printing practices for the environment.

Enough with the ‘save the environment’ hysteria. Why is it important to single out and demand Becca show proof of support to your pet cause? You’ve a nerve. He, apparently, is on this site because of his interests in letterpress printing - not the hugging of trees. It may well hold your attentions but has nothing to do with letterpress printing. Want to ‘save the planet’? Fine. Do so. But spare me the pious bleatings. How be I beat my drum about the slaughter of millions in this world caused by the environmentalist’s ban on DDT? Think that would raise hackles? Bet your dross it would. But I would no more do that than set Old English in all caps.There are plenty of nut sites holding your views - I suggest you, and Al Gore, join ‘em.
Now. Let’s get back to the topic at hand. How about reviving hemp as a paper of choice? Anyone have experience with that material?


Whenever someone posts on any of the lists there is always the possibility, or probability, that someone else will disagree or question. One should not take this personally. In fact, one should anticipate it, rather than hoping for a pat on the back.

I have to say though, I do not recall any overt environmental concerns on your previous (pre-2008) website. So, for me, at least, I am a bit surprised by your out of the closet environmentalism.

Also, it might be more useful to respond to, what I regard as serious inquiries, than to take this all as a personal affront and go home with your tail between your legs. And please take the personal agenda out of it, as not all the environmentally concerned subscribe to the green mandate, and especially to what was referred to earlier as greenwash. And no one appreciates someone else’s politics shoved in their face.

Yes, we can talk about letterpress marketing (it’s definitely a legitimate topic) or we can talk about “best printing practices for the environment.” They both sound like good ideas. This thread happens to be about sources for bamboo paper and all the twists and turns that that has taken.



You have made this the issue so I should probably tell you this.

I graduated from the first environmentally themed university, supported Green Peace, wrote investigative articles on industrial recycling. Likely before you were born. I actually consider myself an ex-environmentalist, and there are a lot of us, and we do pay close attention. Worse than ex-smokers. I am far more severe than you as I do not support the use of environmental issues for gain or profit. I am ethically in opposition to what you are doing with your marketing.


Have you ever read Silent Spring?


It’s not the disagreement that’s gotten under my skin—I understand that’s the nature of the game. I respect forme’s opinions and he’s entitled to them—we’re definitely on two different sides of the fence. What I take personally is the claim that we’re greenwashing, or in other words that we’re being disingenuous with our environmental beliefs. It would appear that Becca cares about being green as well. I would love to hear her constructive ideas.

Forme suggests hemp paper and we’ve had Greenfield Hemp Heritage paper and envelopes in stock since around 2002. Nice paper, by the way, but our customers haven’t clicked with it as we had hoped.

I would be happy to talk more about the bamboo paper. Instead I’m called to explain that our images are not Photoshop montages; Co-op of America actually has a respectable, rigorous application process (try it!); we only order our paper once a year to minimize the impact of its transportation; and so on.

Let’s see, some answers on the bamboo paper itself:

Yes it’s a mouldmade sheet, hence the European paper mill.

We are actively trying to source FSC certified bamboo for our paper. This certification would be the best way to ensure the pulp’s provenance. In the meantime, we have no reason to doubt our supplier’s letter confirming the paper’s origin.

As far as the chemicals required to process the pulp itself, I’ve contacted various people to discuss how the pulping process might differ from other papers. No answer yet. It’s a valid concern. In the meantime, all I can say for certain is that the paper is TCF.

I can also say that another paper manufacturer appears to be in development of an art-grade bamboo paper, so there’s a good chance there will be another source in the next year. I believe this may give some hope to dholland who first got the ball rolling here!

nice to see you have been busy clacking away over the weekend. my name is (Re)Becca Richards, i am 57 and i live in rural oklahoma with my husband, his horses and my cats. i spent the weekend getting two of my children back to university. i work as an illustrator for an architectural and engineering firm in los angeles. i spent my early career in advertising in new york where i saw just how far companies would go to promote their products. i worked on hundreds of campaigns as an illustrator and film retoucher. it opened my eyes to the level of deceit in the name of advertising. i eventually left with skills that have taken me far. over the years i have learned cad and adobe though i do most of my work by hand.

i learned to print in secondary school and later pursued intaglio at university, though i have never done either solely for a living. i print for a handful of writers and poets who have become friends over the years. i have watched with fascination all the new interest in letterpress and i am glad to see all this knowledge resurfacing and being put to good use. i am happy when i see bold new design accompany the process.

my studio is in a spare barn and includes an newish etching press, a gift from my late husband, an 8 x 12 chandler and price, a book press, a lot of wood and metal type and cuts and a cutter. my runs rarely exceed 100 of anything. i resist collecting excess equipment, i have only what i can reasonably use and move when the time comes again. i print in earnest on weekends. i have had some minor problems and found solutions over the years either in books or by reading these posts at briar press. i’ve not yet run into anything i could not fix. i am quite handy with tools and mechanical things. i paint, sew, knit and garden. my vices are diet coke, cigarettes and opera music.

regarding papers, i have often printed on arches, mohawk and occasionally on fabriano when envelopes have been necessary. lately i am printing on lettra which i like very much. it costs less and to my point, is a better choice if you print in north america.

so yes Harold, i have been a briar press member now for i think nearly a week - i was not warned of a waiting period for expressing opinions. the bamboo paper topic was the first discussion i had something to say because i had looked into myself for an upcoming book that i am working on for an artist. i have spent time in asia on job sites where bamboo is used in construction and i have seen bamboo flooring being specified as a green alternative to wood at the firm where i work. the same bamboo debate exists in architectural and design circles which is why i began to research bamboo as paper. everything that is called green often is not.

what do i do in my printshop that helps the environment, you ask. i use what i need and i make sure that it has the smallest possible footprint. i use my old pied type when i can. i won’t order 500 sheets of something when i need just 50. there is so much waste it boggles the mind. i take several commissions a year, yet to me every small bit counts.

i am guessing that i am a bit older than you and i am weary of the notion that environmentalism is something that was cooked up by mr. gore after he invented the internet. it’s the way many of us have always lived and will continue to live without fanfare or flashing lights. i find you use the environment as your platform and do a fine job congratulating yourself on your efforts, some of which i consider half-truths.

it is quite easy to avoid letterpress discussions because of all the hair-splitting that goes on between the new and old school printers. i suppose i have joined the ranks of the old guard.

ladies and gentlemen, after one week, am i now qualified to be a member in good standing of your esteemed briar press?


I bow in honor to you. Welcome to Briar.


Well stated, Becca. And I do apologize for my incorrect gender assignment of you in an earlier mailing. (Note to Self: Never raise the ire of an Oklahoma illustrator/printer!)

Wow! Becca!
Impressing Gerald and Lawrence in one fell swoop is no easy task!

Not only are you qualified to have an opinion, I think you just earned the title “master printer” (honorary of course).


To beat a dead horse to death,

I recently came across an ad in an industry trade journal for a forthcoming conference and exposition, The Green Media Show, subtitled Learn How to Turn Sustainability into More Profitability. Of course, the background to the ad is in green but it was only after looking at it for a bit that I noticed at the very top of the background, where it faded back, were two large eyes glaring out at the reader. Our founding father. As depicted on the one dollar bill.



I would believe this: “What I take personally is the claim that we’re greenwashing, or in other words that we’re being disingenuous with our environmental beliefs,” if it were not for the many Boxcarisms we’ve had to “endure” over the last few years. My favorite is “We love you because you are you.” All I can say is, for God’s sake. And, as Becca suggested, “please, please, please”.

I like to think of letterpress as an honorable activity, profit motivated as it is (in most instances), and yes, you have done one hell of a job in helping out all of us, and, keeping letterpress alive. And, it is greatly appreciated (no matter the occasional reprisal). But, is it all dependent upon the marketing? Serious question.


Bill, when one opens a can of worms, one never knows where it will go. i humbly accept the title of master printer - i should think that some 40 odd years and as many books later i can rightfully accept the honour. thank you. i just received word that i am to become a step-grandmother next year - i am decidedly an old-timer both in and outside the studio.

some of you may wonder about my apparent aversion to upper case. i am not trying to make a statement of any sort, it happens that my computer has a jammed shift key so to get a capital letter, i have to use the caps lock which can be cumbersome. unless i am typing a name, i don’t often bother.

i wish you all an enjoyable labour day weekend. I ask that you all to take a moment to remember the legions of pressmen (and yes ladies, back then they were all men, women were not permitted to print under the guidelines of the trade) who advanced the written word and in turn the rise of literacy in this country and in my native england through their trade unions. my father was one of them and it was he who first taught me to set type and to print.

” women were not permitted to print under the guidelines of the trade”
I have seen ladies on printing as press operators running platen presses and even a compositor lady, she was good and quick at doing formes. Later on I have seem many ladies doing photomechanics, you know, producing negatives and positives for offset printing, back in the mid 80s in my native Portugal. I had a girlfriend who was very good at it.
She married another guy … Cheers.

” large eyes glaring out at the reader “
Thats exactly what I tried to say (not saying ) on one of my previous comments. It is absolutely outraging (and that has nothing to do with bamboo paper , as this tread has morphed into something else ) that the world is being moved by semantics and imagery so the herds peacefully obey and ” click here - now ! ” or “make your ‘X’ here” …

I appreciate we all have to be wary of ‘Greenwash’ in this day and age as marketeers distort environmental messages to their own needs.

However Harold/Boxcar does publish on its website a framework of environmental goals which they aim to achieve and IMPROVE upon within a certain time-frame. How many of us can honestly say we have considered environmental impact in our own letterpress practice and set out our own goals?

Or would that be too impactive on our profit-margins?

The argument for and against the bamboo paper will surely clarify when the precise technical information concerning its production comes to light, but in the meantime I feel Boxcar is to be commended for its vision of sustainable printing.

I assume a certain amount of time and money has been spent by Boxcar in the R&D of this paper and if it gives them a competitive advantage over the rest of us then good luck to them - we’ll just have to wait until a paper supplier comes up with a commercial alternative and then try and make an informed decision on it’s environmental impact ourselves.


“Sustainable printing”??? What - the first 1000 years not proof of sustainability? Enough already! Take this enviro nonsense, and its inane buzzwords, elsewhere. This site is for those interested in the Black Art; not for those pushing personal/political/business agenda. “Environmental Impact”, indeed.

Maybe that’s the crux of this digression, people’s understanding of the term sustainability. The 1972 United Nations Conference on the Environment (note - not a ‘nut site’) concluded “Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.

I assume when Boxcar talk of sustainability they are using a similar definition and they are convinced their thai bamboo paper enterprise fits the bill.

There is a dilemma over the paper we use - virgin bamboo, recycled cotton, farmed cellulose, hemp - all have their advantages and disadvantages and there doesn’t seem to be a definite answer to the question “what is the most sustainable paper”. However it is good to see some printers are taking the issue seriously in relation to their letterpress practice.

“The 1972 United Nations conference on the Environment (note - not a ‘nut site’)….”

This would, of course, be the same United Nations predicting certain world disaster by 2004 should the U.S. not sign on to the Kyoto hysteria. Hmmm. Let me check the calender……
I suggest two things: 1) Never use the UN as credible reference (their track record simply won’t support such); and, 2) always look behind the curtain whenever the loudspeakers of the ‘save the planet’ tin-foilers blare forth.
Now, can we get back to letterpress printing?

“To demonstrate I, too, am driving towards ‘zero’ carbon dioxide production, this month I’ve dropped some sixty or so pine trees on my property. None under 85ft; average age 100. Can’t have those polluters despoiling the atmosphere now can we? We must all do our bit in fighting the Carbon Footprint Boogeyman”

It says it all really doesn’t it…

Back to the press it is then.

Thank you.

I am working for an international non-profit organisation on a pilot project to enhance competitiveness of rural households in the Greater Mekong Subregion. Recently I found a village that can produce eco-friendly bamboo paper. I want to get in touch with potential buyer(s) or advisor(s) who can help improving quality of the product.
Thank you

I am new member. I keep my Cannabis Press name since 1977. I live in the Philippines since 1989. I make pineapple paper. And now I use Big Five of Philippines papermaking fibers; I just call it, bamboo, kozo (paper mulberry), rice straw, pineapple (pina), and saba banana. I have local photographers use these paper. But it it literally new to test bamboo. I have Naginata and Hollander beaters, both locally assembed in the Philippines. But long Hollander beater beating is alchemy. Very soon, if you are intersted in, I could send sample, and let me know what is the result. I used a platen press in Japan, but once I moved to Philippines. I left my platen press in Japan. I made miniature books on papermaking. ipk is my nickname for Iboloi Po Kingdom.

Asao Shimura
Cannabis Press
Poking, Philippines

Hi Asao

I’m looking for a multi-ply Cogan Grass paper. My distributor was importing this from the Philippines but then lost the connection a long while back. Do you know anyone who can supply this?


~sustainability~ I think I understand that term just fine. It’s something thrown around when the economy turns south. Why, because EVERYONE is thinking “How am I going to get by?”. If times were good now you’d never hear that word. Every industry mag has had it on the cover in the last few months. It’s even the theme of some sort of upcoming trade show talk or some ridiculousness. Why? Because the American print industry has been hit very hard this time around. Understandably when developing a new product such as Boxcar has done they want to be sure it’s something they can continue to do, no way to make money if you can’t continue it right? The sustainability of materials for papers to print on, even if it’s not bamboo, is far and away an issue I think, what with the internet being the end to the printed word and all, there should be loads of raw material just a hanging around. ;)

Dear DHolland,
I noticed your search for bamboo paper. We mainly supply handmade Japanese papers, which consist of kozo, or gampi fibers, sometimes a combination of both. Although we may not have a vast quantity of bamboo right now, we may be able to obtain it. Please let us know if you are still searching, or may be interested in other Asian papers. Lokta papers from Nepal also work well with letterpress. However, this may be a particuliar project which may solely need bamboo paper?


Paper Connection International

We are a bamboo paper manufacturer in China, we can produce woodfree and NCR paper in from bamboo pulp. If you need further information you can contact me.

I do a search for bamboo paper and this is the thread I find? I am a bit disappointed by some of the comments but coincidentally, not surprised.


I love these kind of smug but so lame posts. You have provided absolutely no useful information whatsoever to anyone, except to state an opinion, which is completely indecipherable. And with such arrogance. Congratulations to you.



check this out. they may not sell the bamboo but at least you can see what they are doing.

It seems that the Hahnemuhle digital bamboo paper is the same base paper that Legion has listed on their website (although it is impossible to find Legions bamboo paper for sale online). Perhaps the Legion paper is simply an uncoated version as both companies list their papers as 90%bamboo / 10% cotton and roughly the same weights; 265 -290gsm. Just a hunch

Update from Awagami Factory in Japan is that their bamboo / mixed bamboo paper tests are now nearing completion and the papers will be presented to potential US distributors later this year.


I am working closely with a Indian Cotton paper supplier

Their paper is thick and i was able to get great letterpress designs.

Do check out if they stock bamboo paper. I have heard banana paper thought ;)

For those interested, we have the Legion Bamboo for sale online here:

I just printed on some bamboo paper yesterday. You may have found it already but I got it from

I really liked it.

My company has just announced our first venture into selling 100% bamboo paper in the United States. The quality is very highly tested before distribution. It costs the same as 30% recycled paper yet is 100% treeless! You can check out our website at and for inquiries on ordering just contact me through my username. I will be happy to assist anyone.


I’m currently in my final year at University in England and I’m writing my dissertation/thesis on Bamboo, and would love nothing more than to print it off onto bamboo paper.
i have been searching everywhere, but still no luck.
Is there any one out there who knows of a company that produces bamboo (copying) paper A4, that would ship to the UK?

Thank you ever so much


Conqueror has a new range of papers called “Conqueror Bamboo”. See for details.
I have samples here and really like it. Test with letterpress are to come.
Though not having followed this discussion in full extent, I’m hoping to provide a useful infomation…

We tried some of the Legion Bamboo paper recently, and the results were spectacular. It performed well on the press and die cut beautifully. Results are here:

I agree it looks great, just made me want it even more.
Mob thank you for the link i have found a printing company based in the UK, that produce A4 bamboo paper.

There is a French Company called Lana Papiers that make a Bamboo paper called Distinction. This is a fantastic paper. Smooth, great surface and take a fountain pen ink like no other. The contat i know personally there is Bill Hall. Great guy to work with. If you go to the Lana website you can find info on Distinction under the art papers and in the novelty section.

Good Luck

There is a company Legion Paper that sells bamboo paper, they have excellent customer service, check out their website!

There’s a studio in Ireland that promotes bamboo paper and {casually} mentions on their website that:

“Smock have partnered with a 500-year-old European paper mill to develop this fine artisan paper just for us.”

Just for them!! That’s why we can’t find any ;)

Design Diva

Not sure I would buy into that. Lot of hype is used to promote this and that. The story is actually revealed in the archives here if one pays close attention. My understanding, based on this, is that there is a European mill that developed a Bamboo paper. It’s available to the public via various distributors.


Hi Gerald,

it is indeed all here and thanks for the feedback.

I have been following a few discussions here as a guest, rather than a member, for some time. I found the quote during research for an upcoming project and found it both bold and amusing. I won’t enter into the carbon footprint debate here, my interest is simply in beautiful print and paper. I confess to being a lino-printer but find the expertise here invaluable.

Lana Papiers in France do produce a bamboo paper and I hope to have samples soon. Conqueror also have a version, as do Hannemuhle.

I am dabbling in letterpress and hope to order some experimental plates soon. I’ll comment on the paper when I get my hands on it. Clare

We are bamboo paper supplier in China.
Founded in 1992, we get excellent faith in paper & pulp circle in China.
In 2008, the mill we invest start to produce bamboo paper.
In 2011, we apply for FSC training and we will get the certificate next year.
We hv already pass ISO14001,ISO9001,SGS,FDA,MSDS…
Pls contact us: [email protected]

We are bamboo paper supplier in China.
Founded in 1992, we get excellent faith in paper & pulp circle in China.
In 2008, the mill we invest start to produce bamboo paper.
In 2011, we apply for FSC training and we will get the certificate next year.
We hv already pass ISO14001,ISO9001,SGS,FDA,MSDS…
Pls contact us: [email protected]

We are bamboo paper supplier in China.
Founded in 1992, we get excellent faith in paper & pulp circle in China.
In 2008, the mill we invest start to produce bamboo paper.
In 2011, we apply for FSC training and we will get the certificate next year.
We hv already pass ISO14001,ISO9001,SGS,FDA,MSDS…
Pls contact us: [email protected]

We are bamboo paper supplier in China.
Founded in 1992, we get excellent faith in paper & pulp circle in China.
In 2008, the mill we invest start to produce bamboo paper.
In 2011, we apply for FSC training and we will get the certificate next year.
We hv already pass ISO14001,ISO9001,SGS,FDA,MSDS…
Pls contact us: [email protected]

We are bamboo paper supplier in China.
Founded in 1992, we get excellent faith in paper & pulp circle in China.
In 2008, the mill we invest start to produce bamboo paper.
In 2011, we apply for FSC training and we will get the certificate next year.
We hv already pass ISO14001,ISO9001,SGS,FDA,MSDS…
Pls contact us: [email protected]

We are bamboo paper supplier in China.
Founded in 1992, we get excellent faith in paper & pulp circle in China.
In 2008, the mill we invest start to produce bamboo paper.
In 2011, we apply for FSC training and we will get the certificate next year.
We hv already pass ISO14001,ISO9001,SGS,FDA,MSDS…
Pls contact us: [email protected]

We are bamboo paper supplier in China.
Founded in 1992, we get excellent faith in paper & pulp circle in China.
In 2008, the mill we invest start to produce bamboo paper.
In 2011, we apply for FSC training and we will get the certificate next year.
We hv already pass ISO14001,ISO9001,SGS,FDA,MSDS…
Pls contact us: [email protected]

Hey cndpaper

Heard you the first time. Six more identical posts sort of makes you suspect.


I am Dinh Thuy Hanh (Ms. Hanh). I own a factory specializing manufacturing bamboo paper in Vietnam. I would like to find bamboo paper importer. If you want to import bamboo paper or you know someone wanting to buy bamboo paper, please contact to me with email : [email protected]. I could supply bamboo paper with all kind of quantity, specification and quality following customer requirements.

Making consistent and high performing fine art or digital paper from bamboo is a tricky undertaking. Bamboo (even when pulped and formed into sheets) remains a very soft and water-loving fiber, so getting the consistency /absorbancy right for multi-mediums: ie. printmaking/watercolor/inkjet “giclee” printing is not very easy. Fortunately, Awagami Factory Japan seems to have figured it out and now offers a full range of bamboo papers made from a mix of 70% bamboo and 30% recycled kozo fibers. Various weights are made for printmaking, watercolor and digital printing.

With nearly 300 years of history, you can trust their bamboo papers have some serious papermaking knowledge behind them.

See their homepage here:

digital bamboo: