The past five years have seen an increased discussion of, and emphasis on, the idea of “sustainability.” Sustainability can refer to many things, but one of the oft-discussed components of it is environmental sustainability. That is, what is the impact of a product or process on the environment, and what are the ways of reducing that impact?
In the commercial printing industry, these conversations have taken place in the traditional offset and digital printing market segments, but we have been hearing murmurs amongst wide-format printers. InfoTrends identified “green” wide-format as one of its top trends last year (2011), and this year, more and more companies are seeking to “go green,” often under pressure from print buyers, especially large corporate buyers who are under increased pressure of their own to keep an eye on the sustainability of their supply chains. One of the winners of this year’s WhatTheyThink Environmental Innovation Awards—Sandy Alexander—won for the creation of an environmentally sustainable wide-format printing division. So momentum is carrying printers of all types in increasingly green directions.