Hot off the press from Kodak Professional: Kodak’s 35mm film canisters are undergoing a temporary change due to supply chain issues. The change replaces the black endcaps with silver-coloured caps and is effective immediately.
Here’s how you can expect the updated canisters to look (unofficial photo from the Kodak Engineering Team):
As a number of readers (and EMULSIVE contributors) have pointed out, the temporary canisters look fantastic and there have been more than a few suggestions that Kodak might have embraced the change by making this a marketing event around a limited edition “retro/vintage”. What could have been!
About the change, I recently spoke to a representative of the brand, who told me:
We currently use tin-free steel (TFS) for all 135 magazine end caps. Due to shortages worldwide, our supplier will not be able to provide TFS to our manufacturer until later in Q3 2021.
In the interim, we have an alternative material source (tin plate steel). It will not be painted to match our standard look and feel, but will not affect the product or results. We will be using the non-painted end caps until we are able to procure our standard TFS product.
The temporary replacement passed all the internal testing requirements (photo activity / light integrity).
The packaging update, while unexpected in the nature of its specificity, is not surprising considering the knock-on impact of ongoing and persistent supply chain disruptions due to COVID-19 and other (unrelated) mishaps such as the blocking of the Suez Canal for 6 days in late March 2021.
On the bright side for now, at least, 2020’s silver price increases, which we at one point over 50% up year-on-year versus 2019 have not yet been passed on by any film brands in 2021. Prices currently sit closer to +30% year-on-year as of June 28, 2021at $26.24 per ounce [source].
The question begs: how many collectors will be snapping up “Panda” versions of their favourite 35mm Kodak film stocks to sell on at a nice profit in years to come? Please don’t scoff, if you’re reading this, you know it’s just a matter of time before they start appearing on eBay.
Share your knowledge, story or project
The transfer of knowledge across the film photography community is the heart of EMULSIVE. You can add your support by contributing your thoughts, work, experiences and ideas to inspire the hundreds of thousands of people who read these pages each month. Check out the submission guide here.
If you like what you're reading you can also help this passion project by heading over to the EMULSIVE Patreon page and contributing as little as a dollar a month. There's also print and apparel over at Society 6, currently showcasing over two dozen t-shirt designs and over a dozen unique photographs available for purchase.