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Sustainability

We strive to be a sustainable, ethical business, and work hard to mitigate our impact on the environment, whilst actively benefiting the communities in which we work.

Sustainability at Prodigi

Whatever colour your print, make it green

Eco friendly products

We offer a vast range of eco friendly print on demand products across our portfolio. From recycled t-shirts and phone cases to recyclable totes, we aim to provide a diverse product range for any ethical trading brand. To help you choose the right products for your business, we have identified the sustainability credentials for every item and these are clearly marked on our product pages.

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Eco inks

Neo pigment, water-based inks are 100% non-hazardous, toxin-free and vegan friendly. They meet the strictest industry standards as defined by Oeko-Tex 100 safety applications for infant wear, Global Organic Textiles (GTOTS-3V), Residues Standard List (RSL) and the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists.

Eco solvent inks derive from ether extracts taken from refined mineral oil. While they still contain harmful solvents, they have a lower VOC content than standard solvent inks and are significantly less hazardous.

We have minimised the use of solvent inks throughout our supply chain and ensure either neo pigment or eco solvent inks are used.

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Sustainably sourced paper or wood

Wood and pulp is sourced from sustainably managed forests. Sustainably-managed forests meet the needs of wildlife while supporting livelihoods and providing many other ecosystem services, such as carbon storage and flood risk mitigation.

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Local fulfilment

Our mission is to make global printing, local. According to the International Transport Forum, international trade-related freight transport is responsible for 7% of all carbon emissions globally. By operating an international network of print labs — connected through our software — we help online businesses produce products closer to the end consumer to significantly reduce carbon emissions.

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Organic

Organic cotton is grown using methods and materials that have a low impact on the environment. Organic production systems replenish and maintain soil fertility, reduce the use of synthetic pesticides and fertilizers, and build biologically diverse agriculture. We offer organic cotton options across our apparel collection.

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Plastic-free

Due to the long time it takes for plastics to biodegrade, we avoid using them in our products wherever possible. Where this isn’t practicable, we aim to use environmentally friendly plastics, such as biodegradable OPP bags as well as plastic bags and bubble wrap that can be recycled at special collection points.

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Recycled content

We always choose products with the highest possible recycled content to include in our eco friendly ranges.

Sustainable supply chain

In addition to our own internal measures, we are continually working in partnership with our global network to improve the sustainability of both our products and services.

As part of our rigorous procurement processes, we screen our suppliers for compliance with both fair labour and sustainability standards. We look to partner where possible with suppliers who are ISO 14001, ISO 24000 or ISO 26000 compliant. We also actively seek to work with labs who use renewable energy over standard grid electricity.

As a minimum, all our partners must adhere to anti child labour and anti forced labour regulations, as well as providing traceability for all core raw materials.

Our sustainability action plan

Sustainability is at the core of our business, and we operate our own management system to control and mitigate our environmental impacts. Our action plan highlights a number of objectives which we track our performance against.

Our sustainability action plan includes measures to:

Offer an eco-friendly product portfolio to our clients and their customers

We recently launched our own eco collection, which includes everything from recyclable and vegan products to organic and biodegradable products that our clients can sell to customers looking to shop more sustainably. All of our eco-friendly products’ sustainability credentials are clearly signposted on our customer-facing product detail pages.

Reduce transport carbon emissions by printing as local to the end consumer as possible

Our mission is to make global printing, local. According to the International Transport Forum, international trade-related freight transport is responsible for 7% of all carbon emissions globally. By operating an international network of print facilities — connected through our proprietary software — we’re able to produce products closer to the final delivery location, significantly reducing carbon emissions in the process.

Commit to digital-only marketing resources and applying Lean manufacturing principles across our print facilities

As well as operating as a remote-first business, we also apply the following Lean thinking and methods in the day-to-day running of our company:

  • Our production facilities run on Continuous Improvement (Kaizen) methodologies.
  • We’ve moved our Quality Management Process from ‘Final Gate QC’ to Total Quality Management (TQM). This process ensures that all employees are responsible for their own quality and that products being passed to either internal or external customers are of the correct standard.
  • 5S is used to ensure a clean and safe working environment within our facilities. For us, this isn’t just a housekeeping exercise, but a culture of ‘everything in its place and everything in its place for a reason’.
  • Overall Product Efficiency (OPE) is the way in which we measure our efficiencies and understand bottlenecks and microstops within our processes. This measure allows us to pareto our inefficiencies and create Cross Functional Teams (CFTs) to work to a resolution using methodologies such as ‘5 Whys’, Ishikawa and 8D Root Cause Analysis (RCA).
  • Poka-yoke solutions are always sought to prevent issues becoming a part of the process. All of our processes have been Value Stream Mapped to ensure as many of the MUDA 5 wastes have been removed from the process as possible.
  • Lastly, we run ‘Failure Mode Effect Analysis’ (FMEA) to try to ‘break our processes’ before allowing defects to escape into the field. This is done by process review and scoring working practices by ‘Likelihood’, ‘Occurrence’ and ‘Severity’. Each of these criteria is scored on a 1-10 basis (10 being the highest) and multiplied out to give a process risk score, thus enabling us to identify any risks and mitigate accordingly.

Reduce both potable and non-potable water consumption at our print facilities

We’ve installed tap aerators in all of our print facilities to help save water and have eliminated single-use plastic water bottles on-site by only consuming tap water. We also plan to install water-saving devices in all of our toilet cisterns to help conserve more water in 2022.

Improve the energy efficiency of our print facilities by utilising energy-efficient IT, appliances and lighting generated by solar power

We use movement-detector LED lighting in all of our UK facilities to help reduce and optimise our electricity consumption. We’ve also installed solar panels at one of our UK facilities to minimise the amount of energy we take from the grid and plan to replicate this across our other production locations in 2022.

Reduce waste to landfill by minimising waste and recycling where possible

We regularly review our recycling opportunities and available initiatives, and we’ve worked several recycling initiatives within our business over the last two years.

Our recycling initiatives over the past six months have included:

  • Investing in five balers for waste compaction
  • Investing in individual balers for recyclable paper and cardboard
  • Investing in recycling bins split by recycle method for our canteens
  • Arranging for recycled waste to be collected directly from us and recycled back into the supply chain
  • Arranging for non-recyclable waste to be compacted and collected by a certificated refuse agent for responsible disposing

Promote responsible procurement by making sustainability a key factor in our selection of suppliers and business practices

  • As a minimum, all of our suppliers must provide traceability for all core raw materials.
  • We use FSC-approved paper stocks and packaging wherever practically possible.
  • 100% of all paper-based packaging used in Prodigi-owned facilities is FSC-accredited.
  • Where our suppliers aren’t using FSC-accredited print stocks, pulp is instead sourced from sustainably managed forests.
  • We’ve eliminated the use of solvent inks throughout our supply chain and ensure that only neo pigment or eco solvent inks are used.
  • Due to the long time it takes for plastics to biodegrade, we avoid using them in our products wherever practicable.
  • We’ve successfully eliminated cling film from our supply chain and are currently prototyping eco-friendly alternatives to bubble wrap.
  • We offer organic cotton options across our apparel collection.
  • We always choose products with the highest possible recycled content to include in our eco-friendly ranges.

Both environmentally & socially responsible

We are transparent with all that we do to manage both our Sustainability and Corporate & Social Responsibility, and our policies are accessible to all.

For more information on any of our activities you can contact our business sustainability team.