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Tuesday, December 18

Ilford back making 35mm cassettes after 50 year break

Ilford are doing their best to give us all some encouragement going into 2013 with the very welcome news that they have started manufacturing 35mm cassettes for the first time since the early 1960s.

The company said a reliable source of quality film cassettes has been "problematic" following the rise of digital. Parent company, Harman, has grabbed the bull by the horns and invested £350,000 in a new manufacturing facility.

The installation process has been completed ahead of schedule and Ilford is now churning out cassettes in the factory at Mobberley in Cheshire.

Harman managing director Peter Elton (pictured) said, "This is just another example of our ongoing commitment to traditional monochrome photography.

"We are now able to manufacture our own cassettes and this gives us and our customers improved security for the future of film production."

If Ilford have been having problems sourcing film cassettes you can bet that other film producers have, too. Hopefully, Ilford will be able to supply other companies with the product which can only be good for the future of film photography.

Although it might be tempting to deny competitors film cassettes, I think Ilford would be cutting its own throat if it went down that road. The black and white film industry will only survive if there is a critical mass of products to maintain interest for photographers. If there was only one man standing then prices would inevitably rise and that would discourage digital photographers - particularly young digital photographers -  from having a go at film.

Under that worst case scenario, you could probably count the life of film in just a few years.


Nasir Hamid said...

Will someone from Ilford please explain why their film is cheaper to buy in B&H in New York than it is in the UK? It says 'Made in England' on the box!


Hi Nasir,

Don't know for sure but it's probably something to do with the average B&H order being ten times the average Silverprint order, or something like that.

How's Oxford doing, btw? I love the fashion shoots you've been covering. Oxford has a very high percentage of attractive, trendy people.


And you do a brilliant job of capturing them!