Serving the Environment

“Going green” has become increasingly popular among converters, suppliers, and end-users as more and more companies have a renewed focus that hasn't been seen in years on the environmental impact of waste and air pollution. The TLMI Environmental Committee has been further enhancing its long-established programs to help members meet their various goals.

“It's really all about information and education,” says committee chair Calvin Frost, CEO of The Channeled Resources Inc. “In the last five years, we've done some really neat things as a committee.”

The committee brings together environmental experts from TLMI member companies who share their knowledge of regulations, procedures, and new technologies. Through its three subcommittees, its goal is “to serve as a reliable source of environmental, health, and safety legislative, regulatory, and related technical information for the tag and label industry.”

TLMI's Liner Recycling Subcommittee originally was established to develop a liner waste recycling program for members that will benefit the environment, the converting industry, and end-user packaging companies. Frost says the name and scope of that subcommittee soon will be changed to Recycling “because there are so many aspects of our business that we need to focus on, not just liners, matrix, et cetera.”

The Health & Safety Subcommittee provides information to members regarding safety and health issues in the workplace. Its most recent initiative is the “Safety Guard Contest,” which will recognize the three most innovative and effective guards as determined by press manufacturers themselves. The subcommittee received 12 entries, with the winners being announced at Labelexpo Americas this September.

The Recycle Compatible Adhesives Subcommittee, originally established to highlight the benefits provided by environmentally benign pressure-sensitive adhesives, will expand beyond PSAs to include other adhesives that enhance recyclability.

In addition, TLMI began recognizing the efforts of its members in 2003 with the establishment of an Environmental Leadership Award, which recognizes the leadership efforts of member companies that have demonstrated their commitment to good environmental practices.

Most recently, the committee created a task force, which is expected to become a subcommittee next year, to establish uniform standards for environmental “Best Practices,” some of which are major requirements of ISO 14001. The intent of the standard is to assist members in their efforts to address growing pressure from vendors and customers for assurance of environmental excellence. The effort is designed to maximize the amount of value members can realize from implementing environmental best practices with minimal economic investment, while also providing incentives and recognition for members who outperform the standard.

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