What started out as a good idea for Toshiba, the National No-Print Day campaign fell flat on its face as the U.S. arm of Toshiba pulled the plug, bowing to industry pressure. The message was not even heard as much as the slogan. In this day with Print struggling to stay current in its uphill battle against New Media, the last thing needed was a campaign called “No-Print.”
Initially the campaign was set as a “Green” PR event in hopes of putting a better spin on Toshiba’s poor environmental record. Offering a statistic of 40,000 trees a day being wasted by office paper waste was a great tag line and a noble cause. Printing Industries of America was one of the most vocal critics and not because of the “cause,” but the way it was presented. It was not specific in its message of recycle and renew and it seems the PR company that pitched the plan may not have understood the overall state of the industry in today’s environmental friendly world.
Vanguard Direct has long been a champion of using recycled paper in our print to our clients. There are many brands across the spectrum and most are a minimum of 30% Post Consumer Waste. Post Consumer Waste includes office paper waste and is in high demand these days. We have often advised projects to print on stock which has up to 100% Post Consumer Waste. In the past, uncoated stock was the leader in PCW content but with changes in manufacturing coated papers have regained ground and now offer up to 50% PCW. Federal guidelines for coated paper is 10% PCW content; we are proud to be able to offer 30 to 50% PCW content to our clients in all three finishes—Gloss, Matt and Silk. Our client’s often insist that not only the recycled logo be printed on their piece but the PCW content as well. This wide variety of renewable resources gives our clients an advantage over their competition and makes a statement about their corporate efforts to be “Green.”
The Paper industry as a whole embraces not only using recycled paper but also the use of wind power in its manufacturing process, supplying paper which is Processed Chlorine Free and is FSC Certified. Aside from just the manufacturing process, the industry has taken on the lead from European Industry to create sustainable forests. FSC Certified paper is a certification from the Forest Stewardship Council that can accurately trace the final printed project to a certified sustainable forest through a chain of custody. This chain of custody begins in the forest, transfers through the mills to the paper merchant, then on to the printing plants and to the consumer. The truth of the matter is that there are more trees today because they are managed much like crops such as corn and wheat.
So how “Green” is your company? How are you viewed by your clients? Do you have corporate guidelines that include recycling or energy-saving programs? Are you using products that are approved by the Rainforest Alliance? If you’re not sure or have questions of how to get started don’t fret, here is a link to the Rainforest Alliance web page for “greening your office.”
Toshiba had the right idea but wrong execution; if the campaign ever finds life again, I am sure it will take on more of the tone it had intended. To printers and publishers around the world, “No Print Day” was Kryptonite and it should be placed in a lead-coated box and taken to a planet far, far away.
If you would like to follow the recycling trail, click on the YouTube link below.
Author: Tom Caska