As part of a new client initiative, we’re sending out a series of postcards this year. Wanting to be sustainable, we used uncoated recycled paper for the first one. If you received one, you know how bad they looked. The paper peeled, they were bent, and the vibrant color just disappeared.
The culprit? A sorting machine that is overheating at the post office. The heat affects the rollers, causing them to grab and stick to the paper. Result: peeling ink and paper. This machine is used across the country and attempts have been made to fix it, but still the problem continues. So, how would we print and mail our second card? One option was to put it in an envelope – more waste, so we rejected that. We decided to use an aqueous varnish, which is an environmentally preferable coating choice. It emits fewer VOCs on press and clean up does not require toxic cleaning detergents or high temperatures. The paper can easily be recycled and repulped and won’t emit any harmful byproducts in the process.
If you get one of our cards, let us know how it looks. I’ve included a sample here for reference.
Sustainability is a journey. Well-intentioned people will try things, some will work and some won’t. It’s the commitment to learning and growing and doing things better that counts. It’s going to take time to try different approaches and find the best options. Achieving sustainable process will require curiosity, collaboration and concentration – all CAWOOD values. Maybe that’s why we’re enjoying the journey so much!