Traditionally, fibre for paper and paper packaging comes from the wood of trees, with other sources of fibre – such as sugarcane and straw. In more recent times, waste paper has also been used as a source of fibres.
These recycled fibres are processed to make paper products similar to those made from original (virgin) wood fibres. Paper used in stationery products is often a blend of virgin and recycled fibres. This is to maintain the brightness of the paper – virgin fibres produce whiter paper – while minimising environmental impacts.
Manufacturers also tend to “remix” the blend depending on whether there is more recycled or virgin fibre available. Products made from 100% recycled content are usually of a lower quality than those from virgin fibres. 100% recycled products are still very suitable for most stationery applications.