Thursday, April 19, 2012

What does "going green" really mean for business?

It seems like every day there are more and more environmentally sustainable choices available to us… from the introduction of the electric car to the wide usage of tumblers instead of disposable water bottles, we can see that the green movement isn’t slowing down anytime soon. But are these earth-friendly efforts applicable to everyday business? Can your business make small changes to lessen your impact on the earth without compromising your products or service to your customers?
We explored a few ways that local companies are tweaking their day-to-day habits to get involved in “going green.”
Use Vegetable or Soy-based inks
The production of some traditional petroleum-based inks can create harmful agricultural residue and toxic emissions. The next time you need to print your company letterhead, a banner promoting that new product, or any other printing job, ask for vegetable or soy-based inks. These inks have low levels of VOC (volatile organic compounds) which helps reduce emissions and air pollution. Newspapers often use soy ink, because it provides a sharper and brighter image.
Print on Recycled Paper
There are a wide variety of eco-friendly paper options available to you. For example, we offer 100% post consumer recycled paper, and paper that uses 100% chlorine free manufacturing processes. On some projects, it’s even possible to use materials derived from bamboo or bamboo fibers! You can reduce the amount of waste that’s created during printing by working with experts to make certain that quantities are “right-sized.”
Pay Attention to Affiliations
Many products boast labels stating that they’re “green,” “environmentally friendly,” “eco-sustainable,” or a variety of other hot-button phrases… how do you know if what you’re paying for is actually making a difference? Pay attention to certifications from nationally-recognized organizations. For example, many of Professional Systems USA’s manufacturing partners are affiliated with Forest Stewardship Council, EPA’s SmartWay, renewable energy, and Sustainable Forest Initiatives. Most of your projects, including promotional items, logo-wear, brochures, folders, postcards, flyers, and envelopes can be produced only in plants that are compliant in these programs – just ask us to “print green”!
What small (or big!) actions is your company taking to protect the environment in your day-to-day business? We’d love to hear from you… comment below!

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