Go green with print!

Diane Savoy, Co-Owner and Principal at HDG, oversees all of our production work. She’s awesome at making sure everything comes in on budget and is of the highest standard. Last week, after I attended a planning meeting for the SustaiNext Summit, an upcoming conference on sustainability, Diane was telling me about her efforts to help clients choose FSC certified paper and printing plants. It was a really interesting conversation, and well worth sharing. Here are her thoughts on going green with print:

In most print projects, paper plays an important role. Should the paper be coated or uncoated? If coated, should it be glossy or dull or satin? If the paper is uncoated, should there be a “tooth” or feel? What color should the paper be? What weight and opacity should the paper be? And, of course, does the budget allow for a premium sheet, or is an economy sheet ok? Our designers consider all these questions as early in the process as possible to help guarantee a successful partnership of design, usability, readability, and target-audience factors. However, in the last few years, the biggest change that has come about is the use of papers that promote the responsible management of the world’s forests.

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an international organization that brings people together to find solutions that promote the responsible management of the world’s forests. They recommend using paper that has been made from trees grown specifically for the purpose of manufacturing paper. In addition, they oversee an approval process for printing plants to become FSC certified; this means that the printing plant recycles all used paper, trimmings, ink, plates and chemistry. We try to use FSC certified paper and printing plants in as many of our projects as is possible. You can learn more about the FSC and their efforts to improve the practice of forestry by visiting their website at http://www.fscus.org/paper/.

So, as a marketer or small business owner, what can you do to help the planet?

1. Look for the FSC symbol on catalogs that come into your office or home. If they do not carry the FSC certified symbol, write to the company and ask them to consider changing their practices.
2. If you purchase paper for your print products for your business, request FSC certified papers.