Betterprint: Going Green

A recent article written in Print Week suggests print organisations should be seriously considering developing a green strategy.

At Betterprint we are ahead of the game as we already hold ISO14001 and ISO9001 the Environment and Quality Standards.

There's No Better Time Than Now To 'Go Green'

Darryl Danielli, PrintWeek, 12 November 2010

You could be forgiven for thinking that the tough trading conditions of the past couple of years have justifiably pushed the environment down most printers' agenda. If anything, the recession should have meant that it shot up the priority list - simply because it makes good business sense.

As highlighted in this week's special 'Green Issue', whether it's switching to more eco-friendly fuels for your vehicles, improving the energy efficiency of your factory or putting your company through the seemingly onerous task of securing one of the green accreditations. The bottom line is that they should, well, improve your bottom line.

I accept the argument that right now many buyers are probably less interested in paying for the privilege to be seen to be green than they are in cutting costs, but that doesn't negate the need for printers to green up their act, it should actually fuel it.

I'm not talking about sourcing greener-than-green paper stocks with more accreditations after their name than your typical hospital consultant, because if the buyers are not prepared to pay the premium then what's the point? Especially when you consider that, with the exemption of those that involve the eviction of indigenous flora and fauna from ancient forests, all paper comes from sustainable resources and is eminently recyclable and therefore already has the greenest of credentials.

What I'm talking about is reducing and recycling waste, improving production and energy efficiencies, basically anything that fits the 'small change, big difference' mantra that is rolled out for anything from climate change to healthy eating.

Print already has a fantastic environmental story to tell, but there are a whole host of things that can improve your business and have the added environmental benefits. In fact, I would argue that undertaking any kind of green audit, whatever body it's with - or even if it's your own - will have a positive impact on reducing costs - and that's the real measure of their success, not in terms of business won, but money saved.

And if, after the past few years, now's not a good time to look at cutting costs and improving efficiencies, then I don't know when is.

This article doesn't really just apply to the print sector but can apply to any business in any sector.
It is basically suggesting that as a business owner you should consider looking at a green audit of your business to help you understand how employing sound environmental practices can be beneficial to your cost base. Betterprint we already work to very high green standards. We have been accredited to ISO14001 the Environmental Standard since 2008 and ISO9001 the Quality Standard since 1990 and I think it is fair to say understanding your business environmental impacts and then developing and implementing sound programs for reduction can have a positive effect, it did for my business.

As with all these things it is an ongoing process and should not be seen as a one off. You need to continually look at what improvements can be made and access the medium term cost savings balanced against any short term expenditure to achieve those medium term savings.

Our Green Process: Betterprint

Here is an example of how we improved a process within our business which had an almost immediate impact on cost for us:

I am sure you can imagine we produce quite a lot of waste paper, the print sector almost always has to buy paper and board at a larger size than the size of the finished article that its customers receive, we then have to guillotine down from the bought size to the finished size once we have printed onto it. A typical amount of waste would be in the region of 10%. For a many years we have had this paper collected and recycled however I decided to take time to look what happens to it when it leaves our factory. in doing so I discovered that once it reaches the recycling plant they sort it into cardboard, white paper and coloured paper. I raised this with our supplier and asked what the cost of them doing this was to their business - the answer was very high. I set about implementing a process to improve our recycling:

•    All corrugated cardboard and white and coloured paper to be separated within our premises.

•    We used the same waste tubs but ensured all our staff were trained and fully understood the impact of their actions when not separating the waste.

•     We raised the awareness of how the company could benefit from undertaking this new process.

Our waste paper is bought from us by our supplier and the price we obtain fluctuates from month to month depending on the demand for pulp throughout the World so it is never easy to say we saved this amount of money but as an example prior to implementing the new process we were receiving about £700 per month from our waste recycling and after implementation this rose to about £1000 per month so an average saving of £300 per month or £3600 per year.

I think that is a good saving with very little difficulty for my business!

It is through cost savings like these that Betterprint can reduce its prices and continually improve the products and service it offers within a highly competitive marketplace. Betterprint offer the very best in pre-templated designed Stationery and specialise in Business Cards, we take our environmental role seriously and hope you find the above information interesting and useful.

Why not try us out ?

Business Card Discount - Betterprint

If after reading this blog you decide to buy from Betterprint, mail me at quoting "Environmental Blog” and in return I will send you a Promo Code worth 25% discount. Remember, when you buy from Betterprint you also receive a further 20% discount on all additional Matching Products bought at the same time.

My last thought provoking comment is; if you purchase from a company outside the UK such as Vista Print one major environmental impactor is transportation as their manufacturing base is not in the UK.

Good Luck
DNB  -