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Update on printing delays and backorders due to supply chain disruptions

June 15, 2023

Dear A.A. Friends,

As we have been updating everyone throughout these unprecedented times, supply chain disruptions throughout the worldwide paper, printing and trucking industries continue to unfavorably impact the manufacture and distribution of A.A.W.S. literature and other items.

Since 2020 we have implemented many measures in efforts to reduce potential backorders — for example, ordering paper and scheduling reprints with our printers of the Big Book, Alcoholics Anonymous, and other items more than six months in advance of projected need. Most recently we have introduced jacketless hardcovers and new cover finishes in efforts to expedite delivery and help eliminate backorders.

Taking action

We are in communication daily with our printers, and reach out to their leadership again and again to emphasize how important our items of literature are in carrying A.A.’s message to our Fellowship.

Good news! These items are back in stock:

Books and Booklets back in stock

  • Big Book large print English (abridged) (B-24)
  • Big Book (Abridged) pocket softcover English (B-35)
  • Les Alcooliques Anonymes pocket French (FB-35)
  • Alcohólicos Anónimos caracteres grandes Spanish (SB-16)
  • Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions hardcover English (B-2)
  • Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions large print English (B-14)
  • Les Douze Etapes et Les Douze Traditions hardcover French (FB-2)
  • Les Alcooliques Anonymes large print abridged French (FB-24)
  • As Bill Sees It softcover English (B-18)  
  • Came to Believe English(B-6)
  • Nous en sommes venus a croire French (FB-6)
  • Living Sober English (B-7)
  • Viviendo Sobrio Spanish (SB-7)
  • A.A. in Prison: A Message of Hope English(B-13)
  • Reflexions Quotidiennes French (FB-12)
  • Reflexions de Bill softcover French (FB-18)

Books and Booklsts out of stock and on backorder

Estimated in-stock dates, subject to change beyond our control, for these books are as follows:

  • Alcoholicós Anónimos (bolsillo) Spanish (SB-35) – June
  • Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions gift edition English (B-4) June
  • Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions soft cover English (B-15) June
  • Doce Pasos y Doce Tradiciones pocket Spanish (SB-17) June
  • Doce Pasos y Doce Tradiciones (caracteres grandes) Spanish (SB-14) June
  • Doce Pasos y Doce Tradiciones (bolsillo) Spanish (SB-17) June
  • Douze Étapes et les Douze Traditions (souple) French (FB-15) June
  • Les Douze Étapes et les Douze Traditions (Gros Caracteres) French (FB-14) – June
  • Pass It On” English (B-9) June
  • Came to Believe (Large Print) English (B-26) – July

Most popular pamphlets (Top 10) out of stock and on backorder

Estimated in-stock dates, subject to change beyond our control, for these pamphlets are as follows:

  • “Frequently Asked Questions about A.A.” (P-2) – June
  • “Is A.A. for You?” (P-3) – July
  • “Women in A.A.” (P-5) – June
  • “Questions & Answers on Sponsorship” (staple less) (P-15) – June
  • “Is A.A. for Me?” first printing of staple-less format (P-36) – June
  • “A Brief Guide to A.A. first printing of staple-less format (P-42) – June
  • “How It Works” (P-10) – June
  • “Problems Other Than Alcohol” (P-35) – July
  • “Do You Think You’re Different?” (P-13) – June
  • “Es A.A. para usted?” (SP-3) – July

What we are doing to actively address current and potential intermittent backorders

Our teams across many departments in the office have been working to address these challenges, placing orders for paper and binding supplies nine months in advance, and scheduling press time well in advance for reprints to help reduce backorders caused by these disruptions.

Projected continued out-of-stock periods

It is likely, however, that we will be experiencing intermittent disruptions for the foreseeable future, as all publishers will, based on industry-wide reporting. We will keep everyone informed.

Webstore and Member Services

Our Member Services and A.A.W.S. webstore teams have implemented measures to insure the following:

1)     Those seeking to purchase items will receive all discounts earned on items that they select – including those items on backorder.
2)     Individuals ordering can “add to cart” and place orders for these items as they normally would. The items will ship when they are back in stock.
3)     Purchasers will receive emails informing them of any backorders.
4)     The product detail pages of the webstore will state when an item is “out of stock,” provide an estimated “back in stock” date and display related items available for purchase now (the same content in different formats, for example).
5)     A notice on the detail pages for out-of-stock items will reiterate that purchasers seeking to order our literature may check with their local Intergroups and Central Offices, which may have the items in stock.

As always, we encourage ordering the Big Book and all of our items of literature from local groups, districts, areas, Intergroups and Central Offices, as they play a vital role in local Twelfth Step activities.

Working together, we are committed to A.A.’s time-honored tradition of collaboration and resilience within the Fellowship as we carry the message via our literature.

With all best A.A. wishes,

David R.                                                                                          Malini Singh
Publishing Director                                                                          Director of Operations
A.A. World Services, Inc.                                                                A.A. World Services, Inc.

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