The drivers for substitution depend on the type of stakeholder:
- Users of thermal papers : Users of thermal papers choose to use more sustainable thermal papers principally for their public image. They have also the pressure of NGOs and trade unions which are aware of BPA hazards (and the ones of its alternatives). They would like to show their dedication to workers’ health by using safe products for protecting their employees
- Thermal papers converter (transformers): As thermal papers converters provide thermal papers to the retailers, they have to respond to their consumers’ needs and have to provide them with more sustainable thermal papers. Converters do not have the lead on substitution since they essentially look for products on the market which can respond to the users’ demand. They can nevertheless apply a pressure on manufacturers of thermal papers for proposing safer products and make them adopting alternatives even if it is not (yet) obligatory.
- For thermal papers manufacturers: two main drivers for substitution :
- Manufacturers of thermal papers are forced to substitute by the regulatory framework, they have no other choice than complying with the regulations in place.
- When there is no regulatory framework, substitution is driven by the demand of retailers. Manufacturers of thermal papers develop new products to respond to the demand of retailers. Most of the time the new products are more expensive, therefore the choice to adopt them or not is the retailers/users’ decision, based on additional criteria such as public image or pressure from trade unions/NGOs.
- Chemicals manufacturers: They follow the market and the regulatory framework. They can also propose alternatives to thermal paper manufacturers and help them to substitute.
In other words, besides legislative measures, the substitution is driven by the end of the supply chain, from the thermal paper users up to the chemicals manufacturers. The need to use more sustainable products comes from users and the rest of the supply chain follows up.