Can Printing Really be Sustainable? (Pssst…Yes)

Can Printing Really be Sustainable? (Pssst...Yes)

Can Printing Really be Sustainable? (Pssst...Yes)Sustainability is on the tip of everyone’s tongue these days, and when it comes to printing, being sustainable is becoming a bigger deal – and the industry is noticing. From printers to product manufacturers, there are many new ways to reduce your paper trail’s impact.

Here are some sustainable printing innovations you can ask about the next time you print. Because if you’re going to use a tree, saving one too is just good karma.

Ask About Printing Techniques
The first thing you can ask your printer is whether they do cold set or hot set printing. These are two ways of drying ink to the paper in offset printing, and cold set web presses are more eco-friendly. They use less energy and don’t generate as many volatile organic compounds (VOCs) as heat set presses. Today’s more advanced cold set presses can even deliver the same high-quality final product as their hot cousins.

Print on Sustainable Paper
This is probably the biggest one. You can recycle paper all day long, but it’s important to think about where your paper’s life started in the first place. Ask for paper that’s FSC-approved – that’s Forest Stewardship Council. The FSC is a global nonprofit that promotes responsible forestry and sets environmental and social standards for paper production. When you see the little green tree logo, you know that product started life as wood from a sustainably managed forest or from post-consumer waste. Pretty cool, right?

Think About Your Ink
Who really thinks twice about ink? At home, your printer chirps and you spend $800 on a new cartridge. But in the commercial printing world, when thousands of pages fly off the press every day, using toxic or environmentally unfriendly inks is bad for everybody involved.

One solution has been ultraviolet (UV) inks. Unlike solvent-based inks, UV inks don’t contain toxins. They also offer other great benefits: they print well on both flexible and hard surfaces; they’re weather-resistant, so they last a lot longer outside; and you don’t need to bother with solvents, which are full of VOC toxins that evaporate in the air. Choosing UV inks means you’re not making print shop employees breathe in awful byproducts. Isn’t being a better person fun?

To Print or Not to Print?
From shop equipment to paper to inks, the printing industry is making all kinds of great green strides towards sustainability. The world is definitely becoming paperless, but there are still a million reasons to print something. So, if you need things created the old-fashioned way and you’re interested in learning more about environmentally friendly printing, drop us a line.

About Brand Poets
Founded by Tana M. Llinas, Brand Poets is a collective of strategists, visual storytellers, and digital artisans crafting smart, poignant campaigns that command attention. — Instagram: @BrandPoets — Call: 786-732-7466.

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