Sustainability has become a buzz word in the paper industry. But it has to go further than that if we as an industry are going to be able to continue manufacturing paper goods at the same rate. It has to become part of the company’s culture.
Here’s what we are doing at CPC to raise awareness and implement Green initiatives wherever possible:
No one who lives in our part of the USA needs to have the importance of a sustainable business explained to them. The textile and furniture industries have all taken a major beating caused by domestic customers buying imported goods from overseas where the costs of doing business are a lot lower than here in the United States.
That lower price does not come without costs. Dangerous working conditions, poor living conditions, unfair trade, pollution, soil erosion, climate change, ozone depletion, etc. are all effects of unregulated, illegal harvesting of wood for pulp.
CPC works closely with all of our vendors to ensure that they are compliant with the Lacey Act and that none of our parent rolls are made from fiber that comes from countries involved in illegal logging.
We have recently implemented a new Total Quality program where all parent rolls are checked to see if they meet our product specifications. These cover the usual areas of brightness, basis weight, consistency of wind and machine direction. We have added a series of lab tests to ascertain tensile and wet strength, absorbency rates, and fiber analysis. We want to know exactly what we are buying and if it meets our specifications.
To reduce waste, we did a complete review of all of our packaging in conjunction with our vendors. Our revamped packaging, with the aid of CAD-CAM modeling, reduced the number of carton skus, and waste corrugated board in each carton. This also allowed us to redesign our pallet configurations and, with CAPE analyses of our shipping trailers, we are now able to load more shipping units onto a truck with less chance of transit damage, lowering shipping costs, reducing the number of trucks on the road, thus lowering our carbon footprint.
We also challenged our packaging vendors to meet the strict compliance of reduction in toxics legislation regarding the use of regulated metals; lead, mercury, cadmium and hexavalent chromium in their products and are pleased to say that we are compliant in meeting these requirements.
We have a well-established recycling program where all of our trim and waste is recycled rather than sent to landfills. And we are able to offer products that are manufactured from 100% recycled paper that contains at least 40% post-consumer material.
Sustainability is very important to us at CPC as we continually search for ways to make us better keepers of the planet.