At HQ CAS we take environmental issues very seriously....
We frequently review the decisions behind everything. We think about what materials our cards are printed on, what couriers we use, how we package the cards, where it all comes from, even what stationery we use in the office. We're not environmental experts and we know we're not perfect but we always do our best to make the right decisions and constantly review the way we do things.
All card stock, and paper (even the paper we use in the office) is FSC certified or recycled. Your card comes with a 100% recycled envelope. The board on which it is printed is FSC Certified.
Any office waste we produce (which we try to minimise as much as possible) is separated and sent off for recycling too!
All our deliveries are packed in re-used old boxes that we collect from local stores. That’s why your order can arrive in all sorts of funny boxes with all sorts of different branding on them!
Boxes that were destined to be taken to a recycling plant are collected by us to be used again.
Reusing is better than recycling because it saves the energy that comes with having to dismantle and re-manufacture products. It also significantly reduces waste and pollution because it reduces the need for raw materials, saving both forests and water supplies.
We use carbon neutral couriers and so do our print suppliers.
The couriers do that by measuring their CO2 emissions, by striving to reduce them, and by offsetting the remaining emissions by financing renewable and cleaner energy production projects.
Everything is printed and packaged in the UK.
We have decided not to cello pack ANY MORE CARDS! This is a very brave decision for us! In an industry where stockists expect their cards to come cello wrapped as standard, we expect that we'll lose out on some orders.
Please support us during this time; we all know that it's the right thing to do so let's stick to our principles!
We have had requests for compostable bags, so why don't we use 'em instead? See our article below for the answer.......
We use solar power. Both our studio in Cornwall and the one in Nottingham are solar powered and we generate enough power to feed back into the grid as well! We use electric rather than oil or gas wherever possible.
Why not use compostable packing? Here's the reason.......
Now I'm not saying that we never will use compostable wrapping on our cards; just that we've decided not to at the moment. The simple explanation for that is that we feel the technology just isn't there yet. You can buy compostable wrap but it's not home compostable. It's only compostable under a very specific set of circumstances - it has to be industrially composted which requires heat and oxygen, otherwise it doesn't degrade.
This statement from Paul Jackson, Director at the National Resource Consortium sums it up:
"With only around 170 industrial composting facilities in the UK, we are ill-equipped to adequately compost meaningful volumes of biodegradable plastic. In fact, many operational industrial composting facilities won’t accept bioplastics and other biodegradable plastics as they are seen as contamination risks.
It is a sad truth that the rapid movement away from single-use plastics does not align with the current operational reality of the UK waste and recycling industry. As a result, we could even argue that plant-based packaging is less environmentally friendly than using durable bioplastics that can be recycled, or properly segregated traditional plastic that can be recycled or used to produce fuel to generate electricity."
So, what's the answer? At this stage, as we see it, there's no right or wrong answer. We certainly wouldn't condemn any card publisher that continued to use cello wrap for the aforementioned reasons, or indeed any who decided that moving to compostable wrap was the answer. Action is better than inaction, as long as it's made for the right reasons and in a carefully considered way. After much debate, we've decided that the only really viable option for us, is just to take away the packaging all together. It's the most environmentally friendly option and for us, it's the right decision to make.