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Sustainable Ink Innovations and its Impacts | DIC Asia Pacific

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Rise of Sustainable Inks – Modern-Day Innovations in Eco-friendly Inks

It has become essential for product makers and manufacturers to use sustainable or eco-friendly production methods and materials. This has fueled the growing popularity of sustainable inks in the printing industry. Facility owners and managers who handle the essential tasks of running a business efficiently and cost-effectively are now more concerned than ever about the costs associated with achieving sustainability goals. Sustainable inks are environmentally friendly inks that can reduce the number of synthetic and volatile organic chemicals entering the atmosphere and waste streams.

Switching to sustainable inks can offer significant benefits, particularly in cost savings, making it an excellent strategy for going green. Depending on the choice of ink, there may be cost reductions in handling, trash disposal, personal protective equipment, permits, reporting, and record-keeping.

 

Innovations in sustainable and eco-friendly inks

Sustainable Inks and Circular Economy

A Circular Economy, also known as Circularity, is a production and consumption model that prioritises sharing, renting, reusing, repairing, and recycling already-existent goods and resources for as long as possible. A sustainable innovation must guarantee quality and be commercially viable. In order for a sustained Circular Economy to function, it must boost production process efficiency. There is less possibility that the supply chain will invest in or accept an innovation if it compromises the process.

For a number of reasons, printing is a crucial component of package sustainability decision-making.

First, the choice of ink can affect a package’s overall “chemicals of concern” profile for health and safety reasons. Second, the ability of inks to be applied directly to packaging can lessen the need for labels and overwraps from the perspective of recyclable materials. Hence, sustainable inks have a major contribution to achieving a Circular Economy.

Fact File: When considering options from sustainable inks, UV ink is mainly preferred. UV ink is an environmentally friendly type of ink. Because of its straightforward curing process, it uses less energy. Intense UV light cures it. Additionally, it doesn’t need as much cleaning and processing as traditional ink. UV ink and/or UV offset printing ink is also more sustainable due to its extended shelf life (which results in less waste), lack of heavy metals, and significantly lower emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds with VOC-free printing ink. Manufacturers ought to think about UV LED inks as well. They are comparable to UV inks, except they employ an LED, a more effective light. For the same level of light production, LEDs utilise less electricity.

Suitable Eco-Friendly Inks

Understanding the relationship between inks and sustainability involves learning about different eco-friendly inks in great detail. Soy-based ink is widely used because it doesn’t increase printing expenses. It typically costs less than inks made of petroleum while still producing bright colours. The oil made from soybeans is refined and combined with organic resins and waxes to make it even more environmentally friendly. Other plant-based inks come from sources such as China wood, linseed, tung, and cottonseed. There is also water-based printing ink that is readily available and doesn’t harm the environment while also producing excellent end results.

Sustainability is a key objective for individuals and corporations in today’s environmentally conscious world. Sustainability focuses on using less, recycling more, and identifying less wasteful alternatives to prevent the depletion of natural resources and maintain ecological equilibrium. Ink has a role to play in sustainability when it comes to printing and packaging. Hence, choosing the correct ink per the needs and maintaining an equilibrium with the ecosystem is of utmost importance.

Some Innovations in Eco-friendly Inks

The fact remains that there is currently no ink that is completely free of chemicals or non-renewable resources. The closest is algae ink, which is offered with soy and water-based carriers. If you print in black, Algae Ink places you at the forefront of environmentally friendly ink technology. Almost everything is written in black ink. Unfortunately, most black pigment used worldwide is carbon black, produced using fossil fuels. To alter this norm, there is Algae Ink. Because the pigments are made from algal cells, it is easier to work with, safer to handle, and more suited for composting and recycling.

Algae ink is a net-zero carbon technique, sequestering the same amount of carbon as two trees in each bucket of ink. Today, algae ink can replace carbon black in various applications and sectors. Algae Ink impacts the future of clothing, packaging, and durable goods.

If you are considering buying food-safe inks and confused about which ink to opt for, we recommend you look for ink that generates the fewest VOCs possible and has a carrier that is either water-based or soy or plant-based (the choice between the two will depend on the printing technique and substrate). Choose DIC Asia Pacific today and be a part of the change that supports sustainable development.

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