What is sustainable printing?
Sustainable printing is the concept that printing, although not famously good for the environment, can be managed and produced using good business practices to reduce its impact on the environment. It usually involves printing onto recycled paper and card using the most eco-friendly ink. We discuss some of these terms here and also highlight some of the areas where we are able to provide a more eco-friendly solution to both digital and litho printing.
Digital printers use toner made from plastic particles. Our toner is made partly from a plant based biomass and is polymerized to save energy and reduced toner consumption when in use. There is very little waste material when printing digital, and so it is ideal for short runs up to around 1000 units. Litho printers operate on vegetable and soy based ink. These plant based oils make the ink more biodegradable and are generally more affordable when printing in larger quantities.
We have carefully selected our papers to be not only sustainable but also have the highest print performance. We offer and suggest our most sustainable papers first. These are often 100% recycled, however some also come with ecological initiatives that actually improve our surroundings rather than have a typical negative impact.
You will find more information on these papers here.
We are also a Carbon Capture Company with The Woodland Trust. Helping to plant trees in the UK when we buy our paper.
Waste & Recycling
The great thing about paper is that it can be recycled. The landfill waste from our small format department is practically non existent. As it should be.
Our recycling initiative also extends to wide format materials. We now have polyester and polyethelene based ‘PVC free’ materials that can be recycled. We have researched a range of wide format materials available in the UK and selected the most environmentally friendly, and fit for purpose.
This has been difficult and unfortunately the options are extremely limited, but we are extremely pleased to be making great headway with the inclusion of ‘PVC free’ coloured vinyl for cutting, ‘PVC free’ matt finish vinyl for stickers and a durable polyester for outdoor banners.
Responsible Business Practices
Alongside the print focussed sustainability we also follow so basic business practices to ensure we lower our carbon footprint in general. Here are some examples:
- 100% Renewable Electricity with E.ON UK plc.
- Paperless billing and internal management
- Ethically sourced tea, coffee and general consumables like toilet paper and soap
- Energy conservation (timed lights and heating)
- Local suppliers from London and the South East of England
Treating People Fairly
This may be the most important aspect of Sustainability. We will only try to help you in the best way possible. Our experience helps us do that. We will always try to point you in the right direction and be honest and upfront with our limitations, timeframes and prices.
It is in our opinion that by offering the right help, support and guidance we can help you achieve your goals effectively and give you the best opportunity to grow. We want to avoid wasted time and money on things that don’t work.
We don’t take profit from mistakes or dissatisfaction. This means we strive to produce only the best results for our customers.
Little extras . . .
You may also find that you receive more than you order. This is because we have to print overs in order to get the optimal printed results. However, sometimes the extra prints, ‘overs’, might be better sent to you than placed into our recycling bin.