At After Hours Creative, we’re conscious of the impact that our production processes and methods of operation can have on the environment. We’re determined to reduce this and our environmental policy is an integral part of our business. By demonstrating our commitment to combat climate change through a wide variety of measures, you can be confident that you’re dealing with a supplier that genuinely respects the planet while offering an outstanding, highly competitive service.
PAPER SOURCING & RECYCLING
Paper is one of the few truly renewable, recyclable, and sustainable materials we have. The majority of the papers we use are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). This means that the paper is made with, or contains, pulp that comes from FSC well-managed forests and follow a certified chain of custody that tracks timber through every stage in the supply chain. In addition to FSC papers, we also utilise recycled papers that are wholly, or partly, manufactured from post-consumer waste (PCW). 99% of the paper waste from our studio is sent to a local recycling company that has a zero waste to landfill policy. This means our paper waste is in turn recycled to create new papers. Some of our print projects even go a step further and use papers that contain up to 50% resource-saving fibers such as wheat straw, cotton and grass. We also use papers that are upcycled from items such as coffee cups.
Our studio uses a combination of different presses to achieve different results on different papers. Our dry toner press uses toners that are non-toxic and have a high efficiency transfer rate which results in very little waste. Since the toner is fused at high temperatures it requires a certain amount of energy to heat up prior to printing so the power consumption is higher when compared to cold printing technologies. Our empty toner cartridges are collected and recycled each week.
We also operate a small format inkjet press whiches uses heat-free printing technology. This means there is less power consumption compared to dry toner printers which saves energy. Inkjet presses also use fewer parts that require replacing compared to dry toner presses which lowers the environmental impact. In addition, the printheads are not a consumable which reduces the environmental burden of manufacturing and recycling additional resources. The inks we use in our inkjet printing are water based making them ideal for printing on sustainable papers.
As a foil and embossing specialist, our main production process is foil stamping, which is a dry, solvent-free process that uses the minimum amount of energy to apply a metallic or special effect finish onto paper. There are no emissions created during the foil stamping process. Once transferred, foil is so incredibly thin that it is completely dissipated during the re-pulping process. The process involves mixing paper or card products with water to turn them into a pulp. The pulp is then pressed, dried and rolled into new sheets of paper. This means that any of our foil stamped products can be recycled. Our foil stamping dies are also recycled once they reach the end of their life span.
ZERO FOIL 2 LANDFILL
After Hours Creative is enrolled in the Zero Foil 2 Landfill initiative which means our foil waste is converted to solid recovered fuel (SRF) to be used in the cement industry. This is used as a replacement for fossil fuels such as coal. Twelve tonnes of the polyester film used as a carrier for stamping foil replaces ten tonnes of fossil fuel.