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Book manufacturers running at around 65 per cent capacity: BMI survey

April 6, 2023  By PrintAction Staff

The Book Manufacturers’ Institute (BMI) released the March results for its monthly survey on capacity and lead times for soft cover and hard cover books. This month’s survey also featured an update to the questions, factoring in both digital and offset printing methods.

In looking at digital printing, the average hard cover capacity rose to 65 per cent, up from 59 per cent. Lead time for digital hard cover books dropped from 21 to 17 days. Digital soft cover books are running at 67 per cent capacity and 15 days lead time. Both of those numbers are similar to February numbers.

According to responses regarding offset printing, hard cover manufacturers are running at 66 per cent of their capacity, which is 10 per cent less than last month. Lead times are slightly down from 40 days to 37. The average soft cover offset capacity use is down to 78 per cent from 82 per cent. Offset soft cover lead time is up from 27 to 35 days, reversing a trend of dropping times.


With the new survey questions, respondents only answered the questions that were pertinent to their particular printing and finishing capabilities. Overall, 21 companies responded to the survey, keeping in line with what the average has been over the last year.

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