London – Following successful environmental certification, the online print provider Onlineprinters has received the French Imprim’Vert label, which translates as "green print". The company has proved the eco-friendly design of its complete manufacturing chain from purchasing to production, energy management and raising staff awareness. "Our customers from all over Europe will benefit from this certification. We used the opportunity to make our production processes, which are already sustainable and resource-saving, even more environmentally friendly," Dr. Michael Fries, CEO of Onlineprinters, comments on the step.
Imprim’Vert: Criteria for the eco-label
The label is awarded by an advisory board comprised of members from chambers, authorities and associations. To be certified, companies have to meet five criteria: Disposal of hazardous wastes in line with standards, safe storage of harmful liquids, no use of toxic substances, monitoring of the energy consumption and raising the awareness of staff and customers to handle resources in a sustainable manner.
Sustainability is a part of the business model
"The certification has supported us with taking further optimisation measures in various areas. At the same time, environmental protection and sustainability have been a priority for Onlineprinters and the online print business model from the very beginning," Dr. Michael Fries points out, referring among others to the implementation of technologies that reduce waste paper and the use of papers from sustainable forestry and carbon neutral shipping. Environmental consultant, Benoît Moreau, who is a licensed auditor of Imprim’Vert, has inspected the Onlineprinters production site and comments as follows: "Onlineprinters has already adopted very eco-friendly solutions in many areas." For example, a lot of waste paper is avoided by combining print jobs on so-called combined-run forms. The central ink supply considerably reduces packaging material, printing plates are recycled and the computer centre of the online shop operates with a zero carbon footprint.
Eco-friendly print increasingly important for customers
Onlineprinters aims to introduce eco-friendly and sustainable production solutions in all its workflows. For example, the online print provider generally ships all parcels carbon neutrally at no extra cost. Moreover, Onlineprinters introduced the option of carbon neutral printing in 2013. So far, customers have chosen this option for as much as 200,000 orders, which is equivalent to 3,900 economy flights from Frankfurt to New York. These receipts are used to support different international environmental protection projects.
The Onlineprinters group is one of Europe's leading online printers. True to the motto "Print simply online", the group delivers printed products to 700,000 customers in 30 European countries through its 17 web shops. Internationally, the online print provider is known under the brand name of Onlineprinters, in Germany it operates as diedruckerei.de. Solopress, the UK market leader in online printing, is also a member of the group. The product assortment comprises 1,500 printed products from business cards, stationery and flyers to catalogues, brochures and large-format advertising systems. Onlineprinters produces customized products on an industrial scale: The company's pillars of success are online sales, IT-based production and "combined run printing". The latter uses so-called combined blocks to collectively produce print jobs to minimize costs and reduce the environmental impact. The Onlineprinters group has more than 900 employees and produced over 2.5 billion printed products last year.
The Imprim’Vert label, a network of 200 environmental representatives, was founded by the Chamber of Commerce of the Loir-et-Cher region (France) in 1998. Since 2007, P2I (Printing Innovation Pole) has been the owner of the brand and manages the national and international operations. At present, more than 2,200 print shops in France and the European Union are certified with the Imprim'Vert label.
The video "A look behind the scenes of Onlineprinters"