The Latest Fujifilm Retirements

Fujifilm continues to trim and modify their available film stocks. Fortunately, they are giving shooters plenty of warning about when products will be killed. Moreover, this round really seems a bit more about trimming the edges of inventory rather than a shot at the heart of the operation.

In March 2018, the 3- and 5-pack options for Supra X-Tra 400, Velvia 50/100/100F will be retired. Single rolls will still be available, it seems, but its a little disturbing that the multiple-pack options are going away. That seems to indicate demand may not be very high for these film stocks.

In May 2018 a few films will be completely terminated:

  • Natura 1600 (36 exposure)
  • Fujicolor 1600 (27 and 36 exposure)
  • Neopan 100 Acros 4x5 (20 pieces)
  • Neopan 100 Acros 8x10 (20 pieces)

Curious, I did a quick check at B&H: for roll film users there are currently 227 choices still available today. Now obviously some of those are different inventory of the same stock (e.g. different size, different number of shots), but I was a little surprised to see that there's still a reasonably wide choice of options for a 35mm or 120 roll film shooter. 

The way I read Fujifilm's string of announcements over the past few years is that they're going to continue to cater to film shooters for as long as that's viable, but they're closely monitoring demand for their offerings, and trimming accordingly. 

The big problem with this round of cuts comes for sheet film users: Neopan 100 Acros is a classic black and white choice, with really fine grain and wonderful reciprocity characteristics. A large format monochrome landscape shooter's first choice in black and white, I'd say. 

Because Neon 100 Acros will remain available for 35mm and 120 roll film formats, this tells us something about the big format usage: it's declined to the point where it isn't viable for Fujifilm. The current alternative for the 4 x 5 shooters would be something like Ilford HP5 Plus.

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