Global warming, climate crisis, forest-fires, and unpredictable weather – these are just a few examples of our planet Earth pushing for us to make our practices more sustainable. Businesses across the globe are adopting sustainable practices that reduce their carbon footprint. From discovering recyclable material to adopting virtual conferencing, each organisation, regardless of size, have tried to incorporate sustainable processes.
However, with the print industry, one automatically thinks of the demolition of trees, excess paper, endless printing wastage, chemical usage in inks, and other production practices that are ten steps behind the rest of the world
But, contrary to popular belief, print can be sustainable. Sustainable practices have been at the heart of the print industry for quite some time now, it is just that they have been overshadowed by the corporate push for “going green” and paperless.
If you are amongst those who are wondering how print can be sustainable, don’t worry. The following blog will highlight how PICATYPE Printing is offering sustainable print solutions.
- Water-Soluble Inks Vs EcoSolvent Inks – At Picatype, we have made a conscious effort to switch from EcoSolvent to Water Soluble inks. Water-Soluble Inks have 50% less toxic organic solvents as shown in the graph below. They don’t have harsh chemicals (no PVC, no phthalates), easier to clean up, and don’t have that overpowering smell which makes them print operator-friendly!
Company Insight: Our range of HP Latex Printers is an excellent choice for water-soluble inks.
2. Shift from Vinyl to PVC Free Prints: Currently, most signage is made of polyvinyl chloride, commonly known as PVC. Why? Well, PVC is a hard plastic that is economical and versatile and durable. A study by ICRA reports that 90% of advertising in India is done on PVC material and approximately 18,000 tons of PVC is consumed every month (gosh!). PVC provides that high-quality gloss finish that makes everything look better and makes consumers say, “I want that!”
At Picatype, we have realised the adverse impact of using PVC and are slowly transitioning away from it. Alternatives to PVC include recyclable fabric material. PVC prints are already banned in Indian states like Kerala, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu. We predict that this law will soon get adopted by other states.
3. Safe Waste Disposal Techniques – No doubt that the print industry has its own share of hazardous material- polishing material, solvents, inks, coating, etc. These materials need to be cautiously disposed of. Picatype has been disposing of its excess waste and materials according to the standards set by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB).
4. Corrugated Material vs Foam Board – Another way large-scale printers are going eco-friendly is by using corrugated material for packaging instead of form board. Did you know that corrugated paper packaging is lightweight, easily customisable, and recyclable? At Picatype, our cardboard waste is recycled, and reducing wastage and reusing material is at the heart of each stage of our print process. What this means is that our corrugated cardboard prints and packaging cut-outs and waste are used again and again!
Customer demand is driving the change in material preference. For instance, companies like Unilever in India are actively going to vendors who are providing corrugated or eco-flex board and packaging options. The choices they are making send a clear signal that brands will take on a slightly higher cost material and makes an impact.
5. Responsible Paper Sourcing – Whenever possible, commercial printers are sourcing paper from responsible sources like managed forests. They are also improving their supply chain to include recycled paper. Companies, including ours, are also reducing their carbon footprint by trying to source as much locally, therefore reducing transport cost and impact. Another initiative that is gaining steam in the market is using seed paper where possible.
Wondering what is seed paper? Seed paper is a handmade paper that includes several plant seeds. It is easily plantable, and therefore instead of discarding the paper, one can plant it! Seed paper is an excellent material for stationery supplies, visiting cards, notepads, and decorative invites.
Company Insight: A unique proposition at Picatype is that we have 100% recycled paper available from Shiro Paper Mills in Japan. This paper is FSC Certified and made of 100% recycled fiber.
Sustainable printing solutions is what the world needs right now. Limiting carbon footprint is not something that we see just on National Geographic. Customers across the globe are more conscious and will partner with organisations committed to sustainable practices.
How important are sustainable printing options for you?
At Picatype Printing, sustainability is not a trend we are jumping on or a business goal for the sake of lip-service. We know eco-friendly practices are at the heart of our customers, and we are equally committed to designing processes that reduce our carbon-footprint.
To learn more about our eco-friendly print solutions and how they can benefit you, contact us here.