Postal Updates

USPS Stamp Services exploring possibility of soakable stamps

Sep 17, 2015, 7 AM
The Stamp Services division of the United States Postal Service is exploring the possibility of issuing stamps that can be soaked from envelope paper.

By Bill McAllister, Washington Correspondent

Mary-Anne Penner, acting director of Stamp Services for the United States Postal Service, confirmed to Linn’s that she is having discussions with the two firms that print U.S. stamps about producing a soakable stamp.

She suggested it might be only one stamp a year.

As she told Lloyd de Vries of the Virtual Stamp Club during the recent American Philatelic Society Stamp Show in Grand Rapids, Mich., “Yes, they’re possible.”

“I’m going to tell you, you know, because the cost is expensive. But I have reached out to both printers and we’re going to see what we can do.

“Maybe we can do one edition a year. Let’s see what happens.

“You’ve got to give me some time. I need to get true facts. I don’t want to rush into anything and I want to see what other countries are doing.”

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When Linn’s requested information on the USPS cost-savings estimates for moving to stamps that could not be soaked, the agency was unable to supply any cost estimates from its files.

Penner acknowledged to Linn’s during a Sept. 9 stamp event that she understands that many collectors want the USPS to return to soakable stamps. She said she has been pressing her staff and printers for information.

The American Philatelic Society is on record seeking a return to soakable stamps.