Sustainability has been on most companies’ agendas for many years now. Setting out the right environmental policy however, remains an area shrouded in mystery, contradiction and uncertainty.
Piroto has taken decisive steps towards embracing a sustainable future despite the lack of clarity that exists in the manufacturing sector.
Furthermore, we have made positive progress since writing about our sustainability journey in 2022. We introduced double glazing, LED lighting and electric/hybrid cars to help on energy saving back then. Today, our environmental policy reaches every aspect of the business.
Label Material Sourcing
Introducing our own measurement of sustainability for label materials has meant we are able to report on our progress. We developed the following measures to identify sustainable content in each material we use:
- Fully sustainable: both label backing and label face materials are from sustainable sources. For clarity, we have included synthetic materials containing at least 30% recycled content in this category
- Part sustainable: the face or backing materials only are from sustainable sources
- Other: Including no, or minimal, materials from a sustainable source.
As at January 2024, here’s where we are with all label materials used in 2023:
Taking just paper labelling materials used at Piroto in 2023 the picture looks a lot more promising:
Clearly, finding sustainable synthetic label material alternatives is still challenging. Moreover, we will be working hard to source better options and test papers in place of PP wherever possible during 2024.
On the plus side, 77.5% of all the labels we use internally are already fully sustainable.
Reducing Waste & Optimising Material Usage
Reducing waste and cutting label material usage for environmental reasons is often less talked about than recyclability. Yet at Piroto it has always been our mission to optimise material usage in order to minimise costs for our customers.
In advance of the Plastic Packaging Tax (PPT) we were already talking to customers about ways to make their labels more sustainable. What’s more, optimising label material usage is constantly assessed by our technical managers.
Going forward each label and tag specification will be scrutinised. Moreover, any potential improvement that can be made will be discussed with our customers.
Reusing & Cutting Chemical Usage
Whilst our greatest contribution to sustainability can be made in improving our customers’ labels, we believe that even the smallest changes can help.
We are now washing and reusing all rags used to wipe down machinery. In addition, we are now washing equipment using fewer chemicals wherever possible.
Label Manufacturing Equipment
We shared the environmental benefits of changing from UV curing lamps to LED curing in an article in 2023. Manufacturing customers’ labels with a lower carbon footprint can now be achieved using LED cured inks. Furthermore, whenever we acquire a piece of new equipment, its environmental credentials will form part of the purchase decision.
If you’d like to discuss how we can make your labels and tags more environmentally friendly talk to us now.