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News & Trends 05

How to reduce printing costs and go easy on the environment

Sustainability and environmental protection play an important role at home as well as at work. Thus, the concept of a «paperless office» has arrived in companies a long time ago. Despite the popularity of this concept, the necessity for an office printer remains in order to carry out daily work processes efficiently. Read on to find out how to go easy on the environment and reduce printing costs.

Environmentally friendly printer paper and ink

While the printer itself can’t be environmentally friendly, the supplies, such as ink and paper, can. To protect the environment, make sure not to buy paper made from virgin fibres, but use recycled printing paper.

«Blue Angel» («Blaue Engel») is a certification for environmentally friendly printing paper. This paper is made from 100% recycled paper or products from environmentally friendly production. Keep an eye on grammage: 100 gsm paper is enough for most print jobs; you don’t need 120 gsm paper.

Printing paper labelled with «FSC» (Forest Stewardship Council) is also environmentally friendly. FSC produce wood and paper products from controlled and organically managed forests. Go with a smaller format than usual and make full use of the full page size and use paper with embossing and perforation, which creates a great feel. Don't worry about high costs when you switch to recycled paper; the environmentally friendly option is often even cheaper than regular printing paper.

When it comes to ink and cartridges, your best choice is ink without mineral oil and cobalt or organic ink that’s based on vegetable resins and oils. Printing in black and white is always better than printing in colour.

Cost efficiency

The cost of printing is key and it begins with how employees use the printer. If many unnecessary documents are printed, energy is wasted on paper and ink.

Talk to co-workers and establish a common understanding that only absolutely necessary documents are printed. In most cases, digital versions and exchange of information via e-mail suffices. Double-sided printing and the selection of lean fonts also helps reduce printing costs, as less ink and paper are required. By following these rules, your operating costs are lowered and printing becomes more cost efficient.

Modern printers support cost efficiency, as they have saving functions. They work with a small number of colour dots and use less ink. This ideal for printing internal documents.

Go with a printer that’s easy to use and doesn’t have complication functionality and you won’t waste time, ink and paper with printing errors.

Economical printers

Nowadays, you can buy a printer for almost no money at all. However, the cartridges will only last for a few pages. You won’t know at first, but once you run out of ink, you’ll realise that the cartridges are more expensive than the printer itself. What does this teach us? Don't buy the cheapest printer. Pay attention to a good price-performance ratio.

Your best option is to buy an energy-efficient device, for example with the «Blauer Engel» label and work with only one printer.

Printers with refillable ink tanks

Buy recycled or refillable ink and toner cartridges – they perform just as well as regular cartridges. This EcoTank printer, for instance, is easily refilled without having to replace the cartridges. Once refilled, hold down the reset button and wait until the system hoses are filled with ink. It’s as easy as that.

Evergreen cartridges

For every Evergreen cartridge that’s sold, a tree is planted in Ethiopia. No need to have a bad conscience when printing. Check out all Evergreen products.

One last piece of advice: Turn off your printer on weekends and when you’re on holidays.

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Arbenita Jashari, Zurich

  • Junior Editor
When it comes to office supplies, I believe in form and function. From pens, scissors, paper notes to glittery glue and funky folders. That’s what I’m about at work. When I’m not busy checking out the latest desk accessories, I enjoy jetting off to remote corners of the world, lifting weights or taking an evening walk.

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