Printing is going green – who will bear the cost?

Opinion on Orange Puzzle on White Background.

The environmental impact of packaging is a hot topic. A green image and sustainable resource management is of the highest priority to brand owners. As consumers become increasingly “green conscious”, brand owners are responding and looking to their industry partners – including printers and suppliers – for answers.

What can you tell them? Well, for a start you can show them that your production waste is collected and recycled. You can tell them your label face stock is recycled or recyclable and your adhesives are gentle to the environment. You can show them that you have taken specific steps to reduce energy and water consumption. You can show them that your technologically advanced printing press reduces your waste output and increases production efficiencies. Finally, you can present your industry awards for sustainability, recycling, or environmental initiatives and your offer for their next order!


But are your customers willing to pay more for “greener” packaging? Will their customers in turn, pay more to buy the end products? Or will legislation answer these questions and force new measures and consequently, prices?

The day will soon arrive when the consumer interacts with the product on a much higher level. With a scan or a click, the entire supply chain is visible to the consumer, including the packaging. The battle for shelf appeal will become the battle for information. Consumers will expect a wealth of environmental information to be readily available on the label, and will easily identify the sustainability level.

The entire supply chain must invest in sustainability today, and will reap the rewards tomorrow. Printing is going green, and there’s no turning back.


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