Making of the book

This is the very beginning of our journey, where fun facts and amazing images are put to paper. 

Here's how an edition of Guinness World Records sees the light!

The journey of a yearly Guinness World Records book starts with the printing in Gütersloh, Germany. 

Our books are printed at Mohn Media, which is part of the Bertelsmann Group and the largest printing group in Europe.

There, many hours of work and 2,000 tonnes of recyclable paper go into the production process.

As explained in the image below, the US edition is the one to kickstart the production chain in early May, followed by the UK editions in mid-May. 


Do you want to know more about the making of a Guinness World Records book? 

Here's the process of turning ideas and amazing records into an international bestseller... in detail!

How is the book produced?

The creation of Guinness World Records copies starts from the cover, which has been decided and designed by the editorial team during the very early brainstorm stages. 

Step 1: Cover

A vegetable-based ink is used for the cover, while the gloss lamination grants it a shiny finish.

The case is then embossed to enhance the text, creating the iconic Guinness World Records title. 

Step 2: Endpapers

The endpapers separate the cover and the inside of the book.

Usually made with colourful designs and patterns, these double sheets are partially glued to the cover to hide the raw edges. 

Step 3: The pages

The heart of Guinness World Records: all the record breakers, from epic food challenges to body art. 

Each year, chapters and page numbers are reviewed and adjourned. 

The now-completed books are then packed in-line directly into cartons, ready to be dispatched — just in time for September.

How is the book distributed?

Our shipping processes begin in early July from Germany. They start directly from our printer and deliver the book to the bookstores' shelves and warehouses.

Did the pandemic impact production?

It's the question of the decade, maybe even of the Century: "has the pandemic impacted your business?"

Like many other business and the entireness of the publishing world, we were impacted significantly by the pandemic. 

For better or for worse, the recent time has re-shaped the market and changed behavioural patterns, with more people transitioning to virtual market places. However, it also impacted greatly production and distribution.

It caused a global shipping crisis and new regulations brought into effect for imports to the UK from the EU following Brexit. More problems within the supply chain have surged with the 2021 paper shortage which is still, in some cases, affecting the market.

Guinness World Records had to manage these changes with contingency plans to reduce delays and manage costs, while keeping an eye on sustainability and on an environmentally-conscious shipping and production.