The British Library did a study about four years ago, reported in the October 1985 Library Conservation News, that shows that British papermakers are gradually converting to the alkaline process, and that over 50%. of the paper purchased by Her Majesty's Stationery Office is alkaline and buffered. Among the UK mills producing alkaline papers are Bowater Kemsley, James Cropper, Olives, Tait, Somerville, Guardbridge and Stonywood WT. [From the Dec. 1985 Abbey Newsletter]
Connoisseurs and devotees of beautiful alkaline paper are mourning the passing of Olde Style, which Warren is dropping along with Warren 1854 in order to streamline their operations. The company recommends No. 66 Antique as the paper that most closely resembles Olde Style. It is similar but bulkier.
For years librarians have been told, and have told each other, that their voice would not be heard if they demanded permanent paper for books and other item that might wind up in libraries and archives, because book paper made up only 1% or 2% of the market. But the figures from the 1988 d-Post's Directory, p. 2, tell a different story: 1987 paper production of all kinds of paper, including newsprint, household products like facial tissues, and packaging papers, was about 36 million tons; of this, uncoated free sheet (cover, text, uncovered book; bond and writing; and envelope) made up 10.7M tons, or 29%. If you consider only the first category, which is book paper, the percentage is still large: 9%. But this is really an understatement, because some books are printed on coated paper, which is a separate category, and accounts for 6.6M tons. Most coated paper goes into periodicals, but if even 5%. goes into books, that means that 13%. of the paper produced in this country goes into books. Not 1%, or 2%,. And this doesn't even count the groundwood printing paper used for mass market paperbacks, or the dissertations and other books whose pages are bond or copy paper.