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Are catalog companies "green"?

I’m a fiend about recycling.  Just ask my kids — I don’t let them get Happy Meals because we end up throwing away every little toy; I refuse to buy those little juice boxes and individually wrapped snacks; and even I reuse ziploc bags. So how is it that I’ve come to terms with being a “junk mail” company?

Admittedly, I don’t consider myself a junk mail company. I’m a direct marketer with a highly targeted niche. I sell a range of really unusual and useful products to teachers and trainers, which make learning more fun and more effective. And, I really think that mailing catalogs to teachers and trainers really is GREEN. Trainers and teachers don’t have to drive their gas guzzling vehicles all over town to find our specialty stores.  Rather, we send you pictures of the most popular products on paper which IS a renewable resource, then have your packages delivered by trucks, which ride around your neighborhood in as resource-efficient a manner as possible.

The American Catalog Mailers Association put together this terrific paper explaining why “printing is green.”  Read the full document or have a look at these highlights:

  1. Paper Sources:  catalogers consider the source of the paper and rely on forest-certification programs.
  2. Recycling:  In 2008, more than 57 percent of paper consumed in the U.S. was recovered for recycling,iii more than any material. The paper industry is aiming to reach 60 percent recycling by 2012.
  3. Associations: we work with DMAchoice and other to let consumers choose the types of mail and e-­‐mail they want to receive.
  4. Materials selection: they can specify chlorine-­‐free paper, low-­‐VOC inks, and recycled materials, etc.
  5. Forests: Printers harvest trees, but the plant them too. On average, 5 million trees are planted every day in the U.S. In fact, worldwide, 12 million more acres are forested today than 20 years ago.
  6. Clean up: Since 1980, printers have reduced emissions of nitrogen oxides by 43 percent and sulfur dioxide by 72 percent.
  7. Power consumption: Less than 10 percent of U.S. power comes from renewable sources, but in the pulp and paper industry, that figure is greater than 60 percent.
  8. Jobs:  More than 3.5 million Americans jobs are directly or indirectly supported by print advertising mail.
  9. Web and Mall browsing: Daily news followers who read the print paper use 20 percent less CO2 than those who read news on the Web for a half hour.
  10. Preservation of Natural Resources: forests protect water by filtering pollutants, regulating flow, and by other natural processes. Forests also impede erosion, protect coastlines, provide habitat for wildlife, and promote the biological diversity on which all life depends.

We also have several Green products that let you reduce, reuse, and recycle, including:

DocU-Pockets – preserve and hang signs with reusable plastic pockets instead of using lamination supplies.

Re-usable Tent Cards – eliminate use of printing out onto cardboard, plus you can eliminate the need for lanyards and name tags

Well-made products – all of the products we sell can be used and reused. Even the “toys” are selected for their quality and durability so they’ll last a good long time!

 


1 thought on “Are catalog companies "green"?”

  1. As one who lives in an area where the paper industry has historically been an important factor, thanks for a well-written and well-thought out perspective.

    The “Green” movement would probably gain a lot more support by attempting to strike a balance. We cannot wipe out entire industries in the interest of “going green.”

    We have many opportunities to destroy the earth. There are no simple solutions to complex problems. Part of the challenge is getting factual information instead of rhetoric. Thanks for sharing some!

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