Sustainability Starts Here

Brands Talking Sustainability PanelDo you ever ask yourself the question, “What is sustainability and what does it mean to me as a print service provider?”

By definition, sustainability is “the avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance.” A few years ago, sustainability was a little-known word in the printing industry and rarely understood, along with the impact it could have on printing operations from the print service provider to the end user. Now, sustainability is one of the hottest topics we encounter daily in the industry.

As Chairman of the SGIA Sustainability, Health, Safety and Personnel Advisory Council, the volunteer council members and I work with SGIA staff and members to bring sustainability to the forefront as an overarching subject, process and education for the benefit of the industry, print service providers and their clients in what we describe as a “circular economy.”

I realize you may be asking yourself, “What does this all mean to me?”

Brands Talking Sustainability AudienceIn 2017, we held the first “Brands Talking Sustainability Luncheon” during the SGIA Expo in New Orleans, which continued in 2018 in Las Vegas. These luncheons have and will continue to be a tremendous success. For the first luncheons we invited key brand sustainability leaders to discuss their initiatives as well as what they look for in their print service providers moving toward sustainability. The high-level brands participating included Starbucks, REI, AnnTaylor Inc. and MGM Resorts International.

These impactful representatives and speakers made it clear that their focus was to obtain printed product from sustainable vendors creating a sustainable circular economy. How do you develop your print business into a sustainable company with the appropriate processes in place to become a key vendor? The best path forward is to become Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (SGP) Certified. Our member companies who are SGP Certified have not only gained the business of major brands, they have also saved on costs, lowered their carbon footprint, operated in a safe and productive manner, and streamlined their businesses, greatly reducing the flow of waste into landfills.

Printers Networking at Sustainability LuncheonHow do you become SGP Certified and take advantage of the benefits and gain exponential business? Attend our next luncheon at PRINTING United this October in Dallas! This year's event, “Sustainable Strategies Luncheon: Inside and Out” (October 23 at noon), will provide you with access to industry leaders and provide a clearer view of how companies continue to implement sustainability strategies in the marketplace to make a difference both inside and outside the organization. This is an event you will not want to miss!

As a special event, the Sustainable Strategies Luncheon must be added to your registration for a separate fee. To register, visit

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