Global KODAK SONORA Plate Green Leaf Award for Drukkerij de Bij

Monday 26. September 2016 - Amsterdam-based Drukkerij de Bij has won the 2015 global KODAK SONORA Plate Green Leaf Award, recognizing the company for its environmental sustainability.

“This recognition is of course nice,” says Director Norbert van Schie. “It is our intention to have the least possible impact on our environment, and the nice thing about it is that our deliberately green choices often save money. Not only for us, but also in many cases for our customers too, who want sustainable printing increasingly often.”

At the end of last year, Drukkerij de Bij was the first printing house in the Benelux countries to win the KODAK SONORA Plate Green Leaf Award for Europe. These awards are given out for each continent and the world champion is selected from among all the winners. The honor was conferred upon Drukkerij de Bij. “Be that as it may, we do not see sustainability as a contest,” says Proprietor/Director Norbert van Schie. “Our primary concern is for the environment and it never ceases. Sustainability is in our genes, although it began as a form of saving. When our lighting was due for replacement, I looked in greater depth into opportunities for saving energy.

“This was even more relevant when our platesetter needed replacing. On that occasion we also switched to using KODAK SONORA Process Free Plates, which do away with the use of processing chemicals. In all our decisions we look at which option suits us best, with sustainability at the forefront, even if in some cases it costs more than a product which is less or not at all sustainable. Accordingly, we invested in a new transport van with a biogas power unit, boasting an immediate 70 to 80% improvement in emissions of particulates and soot. We also used sustainable paint for recent alterations to our office building, as well as having Cradle to Cradle carpet laid. We are naturally proud of our sustainable initiatives, but above all we still look at sustainability ourselves very dispassionately. As printers, it is our intention to have the lowest possible impact on our environment. Opting for sustainability can also entail saving money, not only for ourselves, but also for our customers. This brings it all together nicely.”

Moyee Coffee

Anne van der Veen of Moyee Coffee, one of Drukkerij de Bij’s customers, can endorse that. In her own words: “In our story about fair coffee, it goes without saying that we also opt for sustainable printing. As social entrepreneurs, we are dedicated to a fairer distribution of the proceeds from coffee and believe that more should be earned in coffee-producing countries. This can be achieved by roasting the coffee beans there, which will benefit the local population. At present, 98% of the added value from a cup of coffee is swallowed up by a handful of multinationals. There is absolutely no way we can justify this disparity. That’s why we want to ensure that this added value stays behind in the coffee-producing country, thus bringing about a fairer relationship between producers and consumers. This simple shift in the coffee chain radically and positively improves the lives of millions of people.”

Impact Report

“Three years ago we went to Ethiopia with a great deal of Fair Chain fanfare,” continues Anne van der Veen. “Our revolutionary way of trading coffee requires a great deal of explanation and transparency on the results. That is why we recently compiled an Impact Report. We ‘lend’ this report ‘out’ to stakeholders, rather than handing it out as a flyer. We made a conscious decision to do this, because at Moyee we are against any form of waste. It is therefore the intention that recipients, having read the report, should pass it on to someone else. By doing it this way, our story is spread around in an environmentally-friendly manner. The Impact Report is printed at Drukkerij de Bij. The key criteria for us in this were a fair price and sustainability. In terms of sustainability, we were convinced in no time that Drukkerij de Bij was the right partner for us in this project. We are impressed by all the measures adopted by Drukkerij de Bij to produce sustainable printing and their recommendations were highly useful too. Accordingly, we decided to have the report printed on Balance 100% recycled paper. This also helps a little to making our environment and the world a better place.”

Sustainability in our DNA

Norbert van Schie: “In fact, we go for minimal environmental impact in everything we do, in both operational management and the printing process. In addition to recycling, we are also making a conscious choice in favour of using sustainable energy. We are thus running on 100% green (wind) power and using energy-efficient light sources. Because we use energy and other resources sparingly, our in-house production is CO2 neutral in every case. We achieve this by compensating our CO2 emissions with Greensand, a natural CO2 capture product. It goes without saying that we use FSC paper. We are also continuing to take steps in the printing process. An example of this is the choice of bio inks and minimal use of chemicals. In this way we have cut down the environmental impact of our printing operations substantially over the past few years. Oh yes… and what about our coffee? It is very much Moyee’s. Incidentally, we have comprehensively tested it here with our entire team. This involved choosing a favourite blend, which is being consumed by a number of employees, not just here, but at home as well. Nice, isn’t it? It is often the case, for that matter, that sustainability measures we adopt here are also applied at home by our people. This confirms that sustainability is in our DNA – not just mine, but our people’s DNA too. This makes me proud.”

Sustainability initiatives by Drukkerij de Bij
CO2 neutral in-house production
ISO 14001 environmental management certificate
FSC certified
Lighting that achieves 40% energy saving
Heating using Nivolair units, a 30% reduction in gas consumption
100% green electricity, Dutch wind certificates
Our own wind turbine, which generates part of our power consumption
100% electric or hybrid passenger cars
Goods vehicles running on biogas: 70% to 80% reduction in particulate and soot emissions
KODAK SONORA Process Free Plates obviate the need for use of chemicals
Presses are highly automated, resulting in less waste
Reduction in solvents, IPA and chemicals down to almost nil
Use of bio ink
90% of our waste is presented for recycling

Suus & Abel Sustainable

Winning the global KODAK SONORA Plate Green Leaf Award has secured a donation of €5,000.00. This donation has gone to the Suus & Abel Sustainable charitable organization. Suus & Abel was established jointly with Drukkerij de Bij and its purpose is to make children aware of a sustainable future. In just two years, Suus & Abel has grown into a professional organization that not only educates children on sustainability, but also teaches them how they can become sustainability ambassadors who care for their environment.
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