SUSTAINABILITY AND COLD FOILS
Environmental sustainability is a growing imperative for designers, brands, printers, converters, and ITW Foils. Today there are plenty of metallic options to help brands shine with minimal environmental impact.
Cold foiling does not prevent paper from being repulped, recycled, or de-inked. The application of cold foil is typically performed on press in-line with printing and requires no up-front tooling or dies. Cold foil can be overprinted with traditional, UV or hybrid inks and can be used in conjunction with recycled papers and paperboards.
Alternative to Laminates
For total metallic coverage, cold foil can be a lightweight and sustainable alternative to laminates as the foiled package contains no polyester film. The film carrier is removed concurrent with application and then is often recycled, depending on your printer's processes.
Related to cold foil, transfer-metallized papers and paperboards are also available as an alternative to laminates. These are sheets which come fully metallized in silver, rainbow or holographic patterns, also containing no film for ease of recycling and lower ship weight.
A challenge with cold foil is that there can be waste if coverage does not span a printing sheet. Many equipment manufacturers have addressed this concern with foil indexing, multiple reels and foil re-use options that result in substantial foil consumption savings. In addition, ITW Foils can provide rolls which are sized for your print job to minimize waste.
Lean, Clean Manufacturing
The metallization process for films, hot foils, and cold foils all begin in essentially the same manner. An extremely thin layer of vaporized aluminum, containing no toxic heavy metals, is applied to a polymer film, using the vacuum metallizing process, to achieve the necessary amount of reflectivity, brilliance, and opacity for the finished product. This polymer film is removed during the printing process.
ITW Foils adheres to an 80/20 lean manufacturing philosophy, with continual innovations to maximize operational efficiencies and to minimize waste.
[Reviewed by Seth Levenstein and vetted/updated by Tom Beattie]
- 99% of incoming PET roll packaging recycled or re-used
- 23 tons of cardboard saved per year with elimination of PET cardboard packaging
- 2.6 tons nitrogen oxide and 0.6 tons carbon dioxide annual reduction due to 2004 replacement of emission control systems
- 80% reduction in natural gas was paralleled by a 35% increase in production output 2002-2007
- 100% of aluminum shale and wire scraps recycled
- 73% of coatings are organic solvents whose vapors are recycled to provide heat in coater dryers
- <1% of coatings become emissions
- Strict environmental compliance
- Maximized roll sizes to minimize production stops and start-up waste