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Latest aluminum recycling total

October 7th, 2010

Your green printer recycled over a quarter of a ton of scrap aluminum plates today. That’s a pile of recycling.

Eco-friendly printing statistics & household tips

October 6th, 2010

As a buyer of green printing, you are likely aware of the impact of the paper and printing industry on the environment. For instance, recycling one ton of paper saves 17 mature trees, 7,000 gallons of water, 3 cubic yards of landfill space, 2 barrels of oil, and 4,100 kilowatt-hours of electricity. That’s enough energy to power the average home for five months.

The average household uses, per person, approximately one 100-foot tall Douglas fir tree in paper and wood products per year. Here are some other household energy consumption statistics you may find interesting:

An older model washing machine uses about 41 gallons per load versus the high-efficiency washing machines which use less than 28 gallons of water per load.

A leaky faucet that drips just one drop per second can potentially waste more than 3,000 gallons of water each year.

Letting your faucet run for five minutes uses about as much energy as letting a 60-watt light bulb run for 14 hours.

A refrigerator built 20 years ago uses 70% more energy than today’s energy-efficient models.

Smoother folds keep quality high on recycled papers

August 12th, 2010

Who spends over $10,000 to make a prettier crease on a piece of paper? Well, apparently we do. Green printing is just the beginning of our process – finishing is every bit as important to assuring a quality result. We’ve always done a good job with scoring, but when we saw what a real knife-and-die crease looked like, we had to have it in our bindery. So we made the commitment to a Morgana Auto-Creaser.

A traditional score is accomplished using a wheel and collar on a set of roller shafts. The idea is to break the fibers of the sheet and stretch the paper so that when the fold is made, the sheet doesn’t crack. This is usually sufficient, but occasionally even a scored paper shows some cracking, especially when there is solid ink crossing the fold or the paper is folding against the grain. Other factors such as high post-consumer recycled content and digital printing only make the problem worse. Further, because it is guided by a side guide down the edge of the sheet, the accuracy of a score is never quite perfect enough for us.

The Morgana, on the other hand, creates a perfectly smooth crease using a male and female die, and a lot of pressure. This forms a precise valley that looks like a miniature book spine. Even when creasing heavy recycled card stock across the grain, there is virtually no cracking. The machine uses electronic eyes to precisely stop the sheet at each crease location, and the results are incredibly accurate.

We could have bought a Harley, but we’re just geeky enough that the Creaser seemed more appealing. After using the machine for less than a month, Andrew, our bindery manager, commented that he really didn’t know what we did before acquiring it. Not only have we eliminated our scoring issues, the Creaser makes all of our subsequent operations trouble-free. The folder flies through jobs with critical color breaks, and the booklet-maker never misses exacting cross-overs.

Obviously we are committed to very high quality standards, and we think we should continue to invest in our process, even when the economy gets tough. Our work demands precision and our customers deserve it. So next time you pick up a printed job, take a close look at the folding. Then stop in and ask us for a demonstration of our new Morgana Auto-Creaser.

Students establish environmental website

July 30th, 2010

We like to help environmental non-profits. When you support Barefoot Press with your green printing orders, you should know that some of our profits are being directed to these organizations. We recently received a request for help from a website called OurEarth.org, and we think you should check them out.

This is how the group describes it’s mission: “The OurEarth.org website began as a simple idea to make it easier for the public to find environmental information. There are outstanding environmental programs, activities, initiatives, ideas, and grassroots efforts across the country but it can be difficult to sort through all of the websites and information available. As a result, important natural resources, energy savings, and pollutant reductions are lost each and every day, causing unnecessary damage to our planet.”

Here is a tip from the site: “Look for products marked with “Post-Consumer Content” and “Recycled Content” Computer printer paper, notebooks, paper towels, toilet paper, plastic products, and many other household items can be found that are made from at least partially recycled materials.”

It’s important that we all work together for a healthier planet. Order green printing on 100% post-consumer recycled papers, and eco-friendly marketing materials, and don’t forget that we also offer many post-consumer recycled products like the ones listed above.

Brewery goes green with Cookbook

July 2nd, 2010

Elizabeth Rudd and the Heinzelmannchen Brewery in Sylva, NC have published a cookbook that includes stories, tips and recipes using their beer. The 6 year-old brewery was featured in the November, 2009 issue of Southern Living magazine in an article entitled German Beer Comes to Sylva.

The Brewery believes in eco-friendly practices, such as selling their beer in 2-liter glass “growlers” that are refilled rather than thrown away or recycled. The beer contains no preservatives and is not pasteurized. It was because of these values and principles that they chose Barefoot Press for the printing of Your Gnometown Cookbook.

Elizabeth puts it this way: “…the West and the East of North Carolina teamed up on this project. Though diverse in their fields of expertise, they have much in common: excellence, quality, experience and a personal touch. Working for a profit, yes, but without sacrificing the personal bonds they share with their customers – rare in today’s business world. They both share a commitment to quality and offer products they are proud to put their names on. … I believe this is a shining example of businesses working together, with integrity and care, for a common goal… a win-win situation for all.”

The cookbook is a fine example of green printing. The pages are printed with soy inks on 100% post-consumer recycled, chlorine-free paper, and the covers are made from 100% recycled French Paper Muscletone 140# cover. The binding is wire-O so the book lays flat for easy reading while cooking, but the coil is hidden behind a printed spine so it fits right in on the bookshelf. The book can be ordered at the company’s website: www.yourgnometownbrewery.com, or you can pick up a copy at the Brewery gift shop. Lift a pint for us!

Green Printer Eliminates Wastewater

July 1st, 2010

We are happy to report another step toward sustainable, green printing has been finalized here at Barefoot Press. We reported earlier on our transition to process-free Fuji plates. The plates are in full production and it was one of the easiest transitions we have made.

As I was filling out a waste-water survey form for the City of Raleigh the other day, I realized that with this move, we have totally eliminated all waste-water from our process! The only water that goes down a drain at our plant is in the bathroom. Green Printing can’t get much more eco-friendly than this.

Barefoot Press founder nominated for Environmental Leadership Award

March 2nd, 2010

Richard Kilby, President of Barefoot Press – a pioneer in eco-friendly printing in Raleigh, NC – has been nominated for the William D. Schaeffer Environmental Award.

Created in 1990, the award honors Dr. William Schaeffer and his many contributions to environmental research, compliance education, and advocacy in the printing industry. According to the Printing Industries of America website: “The Schaeffer Award serves to recognize an individual’s focus on advancing environmental awareness and action in the graphic communications industry as a whole. A candidate’s accomplishments should go above and beyond job requirements or display an unselfish contribution to the industry not solely for a particular organization’s commercial gain. The ongoing environmental advocacy of Dr. Schaffer typifies the leadership activities expected of award recipients. Individuals must have sustained long-term efforts (on the order of several years or more) that have resulted in successful environmental programs and improvements.”

Barefoot Press was founded in 1987 in order to promote recycled papers and green printing practices. The company has pursued it’s agenda of educating customers and the general public about the benefits of eco-friendly printing for some 23 years. Mr. Kilby’s nomination is a recognition of those ongoing efforts.

Process-free plates make green printing more efficient

February 3rd, 2010

We are happy to confirm that another step toward sustainable printing has been accomplished here at Barefoot Press. We reported earlier on our transition to process-free Fuji plates. Well, the plates are now in full production and everything went like clockwork.

Because these plates use no water, developer, or any other chemistry, they have totally eliminated all remaining environmental issues in our prepress department. We simply laser-image the plates on our Fuji DART platesetter and hang them on the press. The plates fall into register quicker, roll up to color quicker, and so far we have had no plate remakes due to a quality issue. Because they are made from a high grade aluminum they are just as recyclable as our last plates, but have none of the waste disposal issues related to the plate processor.

We are always looking for ways to improve our eco-friendly printing process. This is a big step toward sustainability, and it wasn’t inexpensive to implement. But the results are worth the investment and effort, and we are pleased to say we have the cleanest prep department a green printer can have. We are offering demonstrations, so if you are interested please drop us a line.

Original Green Printer makes move to eliminate prepress chemistry

January 19th, 2010

The new year brings new innovation to Barefoot Press as we begin the transition to process-free plates in our pressroom. This move will eliminate all wet chemistry in our prepress department. The Fuji Ecomaxx-T plates are imaged via the laser diode banks on our Fuji DART platesetter, then go straight to press without the need for a chemical processor.

We are constantly striving to achieve a cleaner green printing process, and this is a significant step in that evolution. Our previous plates used a largely water-based process, but still required chemistry along with all of the maintenance, mess and water usage. Now, the water usage is completely eliminated and the process is totally clean and dry. We are very excited to make this move towards an even more eco-friendly printing process.

Global warming just a hoax – green printing no longer necessary

December 10th, 2009

You can’t imagine how much relief your green printer feels upon learning that global warming was actually just a hoax perpetrated by a handful of agenda-driven, mad scientists intent on ruling the planet. We’ve been following the unfolding story of emails uncovered by the intrepid, “fair-and-balanced” reporters at FOX News. It’s hard to believe these “junk” scientists managed to pull off such a large-scale deception. But I have to tell you it’s a load off our shoulders.

I think everyone here at Barefoot Press is sick of that scratchy, 100% recycled toilet paper in the staff restrooms. Not to mention those stinking recycling bins cluttering up the loading dock. The company Toyota is cramped, and I always felt intimidated on the highway. I’m really tired of tending that garden in the front.

For 23 years we’ve been laboring under the belief that green printing is important, that it was our duty to do our part. We’ve used recycled papers, pushed our suppliers to develop low-VOC chemistry and soy inks, implemented comprehensive in-house recycling programs, offset our carbon emissions by supporting green energy, donated profits to environmental groups (THAT was a waste!)… The effort has been exhausting. Happily, we now know it’s just not necessary.

I don’t feel imtimidated on the highway any more, because our new company car is a Hummer! Our increased margins allowed us to buy it new. These vinyl-based inks smell really strong, but they dry super-fast. We put a huge dumpster where the recycling bins used to be, and the scrap paper gets burned once a week in the parking lot.

But the coolest thing is that we now have a lot of awesome, cheap, virgin-fiber paper choices. Most of these sheets originate from the rampant, unregulated logging in the rainforests of Indonesia and the “developing” world, so there’s no “fair labor” or regulatory costs to pass on to you. It’s much easier to print on too, having never been through the repulping process. As our International Paper rep told us years ago, “old growth trees make a fine sheet of paper!”

Yes, happy days are here again, and our collective conscience is clear. Things are cheaper and easier now. Our profits are better than ever. And we finally have some soft toilet paper.

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