More and more, customers want to know what their provider companies are doing in terms of environmental leadership in green printing, including policies to decrease waste, use of responsibly-sourced base products, and transparent reporting.
Canopy is a not-for-profit environmental organization based in Vancouver, British Columbia, that works with businesses to create environmental policies. To that end, the group just released the first of what looks to be an annual report, “North America’s 2013 Green Print Leadership Report,” which details of environmental policies related to paper procurement,
[quote]“Canopy’s 2013 Report is designed to demystify the information on sustainable practices and shine a spotlight on printers that have distinguished themselves in this growing field of endeavor,” according to the press release. [/quote]
36 printers from 254 print plants took part in the survey. So how do printers stack up? Here are some results:
- a vast majority, 92%, have sustainability policies in place;
- 10 publish a sustainability report;
- 20 have established programs to increase use of recycled products;
- 23 printers give preference to FSC certified paper;
Meanwhile, industry magazine Print Week’s UK edition conducted its own survey of 200 printers last summer to find out how they were dealing with environmental considerations and what effect, if any, they were having on their businesses.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, with the global economy still stuttering, price still comes out on top, but green concerns are inching up as a priority. Probably the biggest change is that being green is no longer considered negotiable—most companies surveyed have some sort of environmental policy in place.
Highlights of their findings:
- 64% said that having an environmental accreditation was a “standard requirement;”
- 29 % said that having environmental standards and policies were “fairly important” when winning contracts, while 34 % said they were “important,” and 19.5% said they were “very important;”
- In response to the question: “Has the economic downturn led to clients specifying recycled grades less frequently?”, 33% said they remain constant, 28% said marginally, and 16% said dramatically;
- 48% responded that buyers don’t pay a premium for recycled paper;
- 15% responded that the economic vs. environmental decision ratio is 80% vs. 20%.
Both reports emphasize that instituting green policies isn’t just about being kind to the planet, but also about keeping businesses up-to-date with industry trends, and companies that are marketing and branding as environmentally aware are good business moves. In other words, it’s not just about keeping Mother Nature healthy but also your bottom line.