How The Greeting Card Trade Fuels Your Carbon Footprint

These days, there seems to be a celebration of some sort popping up every week. Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, birthdays, anniversaries, engagements… the list is endless. Each one of these special occasions needs to be marked and celebrated in style, and it’s unthinkable to imagine not acknowledging a special day through a great greetings card.

Sending cards show that you are thinking of the people you write to, and offer a really personal and thoughtful way of sharing in someone’s special occasion. The problem is, the tradition is not one which supports green behaviors, and many people are growing more and more aware of the environmental impact of sending cards.

Is it possible to be environmentally friendly and still send a card?
Until recently, the lack of consistently good quality recycled paper and board products meant that it was hard to be an environmentally friendly publisher. However, in recent years more board and envelope merchants have been adding quality recycled materials to their portfolios and the price of recycled board and paper has become more comparable to non-recycled. This means that it is easier than ever before to source ethical products in the greeting card industry, knowing that you are buying green recycled products which can then be recycled again to maintain a cycle of sustainability.

Paper mills are more environmentally-conscious than they have ever been before when it comes to their production processes, and the majority now develop boards that have been certified under the FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) and the PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Classification). Both the schemes promote sustainable forest management, providing us with reassurance that paper products originate from well-managed forests or recycled sources.

Sourcing ethical greetings cards
There’s a small company in California called Two Piglets that designs and print greeting cards. All the cards are pressed using soy ink onto paper that is 30% post consumer recycled fiber. The scrap cards are shredded and used as packing materials, shipping cartons are re-used boxes from local retailers and even the presses are cleaned using ordinary vegetable oil. Two Piglets also sells invitations and in the future they’ll be making custom invitations. Order online or check out what stores carry them near you.

Switch to e-cards for a modern alternative to the traditional classics. There are a wealth of online card sites where you can select great designs, personalize them through the site and ping them off instantly. This saves forests, cuts down on the postage and carbon footprint associated with sending the cards and also helps you to remember birthdays and get something off on time! Check out sites such as Ecards or Blue Mountain for more information.


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