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What is Green Printing?

We have been asking ourselves that question every year for 35 years, and each year we come up with a different answer.  To us, green printing is not a staid definition – rather, it’s an ongoing commitment to redefinition.

Since 1973, Consolidated Printing has built a rich and meaningful history as America’s original green printer.  Our award-winning holistic sustainability program extends far beyond paper and ink selection to drive our technology, our building, our supply chain, and most importantly our culture.

This commitment keeps us from just sitting back and watching trends and best practices happen – it forces us to create them.  We were one of the first printers to use soy ink. Our Printedgreen®360 program defines us and drives us to continually define what green printing should be.

PrintedGreen®360 (noun): the relentless commitment to inventing, finding, testing and incorporating the healthiest and most environmentally sustainable commercial printing practices without sacrificing an iota of print quality.

PrintedGreen®360 is an all-encompassing promise that we make to our clients and our employees – no stone goes unturned when it comes to reducing potential harm to our people and our planet.  Explore our PrintedGreen®360 diagram to see what we mean:

click on a quadrant to learn more

Culture

By dedicating our work to greener, healthier ways of doing things, it's hard not to become more conscious and passionate about sustainability in our everyday lives.  The newest addition to our facility, for example, is an outdoor patio and organic garden.  It yields wonderful, fresh produce as well as another excuse to hang out together!

Materials

All ink and paper is as sustainable as possible and made in America.  Many toxic chemicals typically used in commercial printing have all been replaced with household products like fabric softener, used restaurant grease and vinegar.  Our printing process is petroleum free and carcinogen-free, which is unique in the industry. 

Facility

For us, the "green building" craze is SO 2004!  That’s when we rebuilt our facility with recycled aluminum studs, formaldehyde-free insulation, no VOC paint, 100% recycled carpeting and 57% recycled ceiling tiles.  Other printers who visit are dumbfounded to find there is no external exhaust fan in our printshop.  When there are no harmful emissions, who needs exhaust?

Technology

Like many industries out there, printing is a "me too" industry.  But among printing technology innovators, Consolidated is known as the "me first!" company.  If there is a new product that legitimately produces less waste, less emissions or less energy usage, we are going to give it a try and consider it. 

PrintedGreen®360 means:

  • We generate no hazardous wastewater
  • We reuse/recycle 100% of our paper waste
  • We only use paper from sustainably harvested forests
  • We reduced overall energy consumption by 30%
  • We use no petroleum-based products
  • We eliminated all carcinogens from our entire process
  • We use recyclable inks and toners
  • We emit zero hazardous air pollutants
  • Green E Carbon Credits for 100% of our electric for building turbines and grids

Green Printing Awards:

  • William D. Schaeffer Environmental Award 2008
  • Pollution Prevention Awards 2006, 2007 and 2009
  • Chicago Greenworks Awards 2006 Market Transformation in Green Products and Green Practices
  • Illinois First Great Printer 1997