Ten Steps to a Greener Print Shop, Part 2

Last time, we covered the first five steps to a greener print shop. Here are the remaining five.

6. Offer green paper options

Offer your customers a range of ‘green’ papers from recycled stock to paper made from alternative sources such as hemp, cotton, or even stone (yes, we said “stone”). And while you’re at it, learn about your paper. A good green printing company should not only offer a greener product, they should be able to explain exactly why that product is more environmentally friendly.

7. Reduce your in-house energy consumption

New machinery won’t just improve your productivity and print quality, it can also drastically reduce your energy consumption. Turning off the lights when you leave is one thing, but saving thousands of watts a year on a major piece of equipment is a whole other ballgame.

8. Dispose of your waste properly

Sustainable printing doesn’t stop once the print job has been shipped. Your green practices should extend all the way to your waste disposal and recycling. Do you know what qualifies as hazardous waste in your shop? Do you know how to dispose of it properly? Are you disposing of it properly? Is it possible to switch to a printer or ink that’s non-toxic and therefore does not generate any hazardous waste?

9. Dispose of your equipment properly

So, you’re buying a new printer that’s energy-efficient and better suited to non-toxic inks. What are you going to do with your old one? How will you dispose of it? Is it possible to reuse any of the parts or find someone who could reuse the parts? A number of equipment manufacturers run recycling programs, you just have to ask.

10. Scrutinize your supply chain

You may claim to be the most green printing company in the world, but that doesn’t mean much if your suppliers are some of the planet’s worst environmental offenders. Do your best to make sure the suppliers you’re dealing with are not only doing their own bit to reduce their environmental impact, but can back it up too. It’s one thing to stamp “Green” on a product, it’s another to prove it.

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