The philosophy of green printing extends far beyond the print engine and media which is being used, and encompasses an entire method of working that is targeted towards an eco-beneficial environment. The growth of digital processes has certainly enhanced the potential for greener attitudes throughout the printing industry, and EFI has played a significant part in educating its customers world-wide by offering a portfolio of products that offers an alternative that leads to a reduction in waste and use of resources, and leads to more responsible production methods.
EFI’s commitment to the environment has complemented its position as the leading pioneer in ink-jet technology and software throughout its inks and machines, driving the transition to UV-curable from solvent-based production. The importance of greener working practices is not just evident in the company’s printing processes but, also, through the ability to reduce waste significantly and, overall, help its customers reduce their carbon footprint.
Environmental benefits are achieved through numerous routes, with EFI’s development of printers, inks and software being designed to harbour greater efficiencies and encourage greater responsibility and green awareness from its users. With sustainability and eco-aware practices becoming increasingly important throughout all industries, users of EFI’s products all benefit from being able to generate streamlined working methodologies that are designed to meet the stricter environmental criteria that are likely to challenge print companies world-wide in the future.
Using efficient MIS and ERP software means that operations can be streamlined, with superior job management and analysis, while Digital StoreFront web-to-print software enables even the most complex orders and transactions to be carried out online. The company’s production printing solutions include Fiery digital front ends and workflow capabilities that result in error-free processes, again minimising waste and increasing machine uptime. With colour management tools that provide automation and accurate colour, turnaround times are faster, enabling users to offer higher value services and greater efficiencies.
The company’s wide- and superwide-format print engines benefit from VOC free UV-curable ink chemistries and are designed to meet the growing demands of users on all budgets who need to produce shorter runs, include a greater amount of personalisation and VDP, and generate orders in faster turnaround times. By reducing overhead costs and printing on demand, it is easier to maintain eco-awareness and, with digital print removing the need for analogue make-ready, the need for plates and chemistry is eliminated.
Of particular relevance is EFI’s ‘cool cure’ technology that is an integral element of its VUTEk 3.2m GS3250LX and 2m GS2000LX wide-format platforms, with LEDs removing the need for conventional UV lamps and allowing all materials, including sensitive and difficult media, to be cured at low temperatures. Additionally, the company’s greyscale option lets users work more efficiently using less ink, while remote diagnostics reduce the need for unnecessary site visits which, again, save on the use of resources.
Likewise, in the label sector, EFI’s Jetrion narrow-web digital engines are enabling convertors to reduce significant levels of waste, particularly for short- and medium-run applications where labour costs are reduced and turnaround times are enhanced. These benefits are complemented by the excellent potential for customisation, localisation and other VDP advantages, lowering the cost per label and increasing efficient practices.
“There is a growing need for manufacturers to embrace greener production practices, with the printing industry being a prime example of a sector where waste can be reduced, and resources and materials used more efficiently,” states EFI’s Marc Verbiest. “EFI is leading the way by developing a greener portfolio of printers, inks and software, simplifying the transition for customers and ensuring that they reap the advantages of environmentally friendly production which, in turn, benefits their clients. We expect to see more countries embrace eco-aware practices as practical solutions and operational practices become more commonplace and easier to adopt.”
EFI’s endorsement of greener practices is followed through with its membership as an associate member of the Verdigris initiative. This is a not-for-profit research collaboration that aims to help printers and their customers to develop a greater understand about the environmental impact of print media.