Forests are among the most biodiverse and valuable terrestrial ecosystems on the planet and vital to all life. The paper and printing industry is often labelled as having a negative environmental effect but in reality this is a misnomer and print operations can be sustainable and responsible.
The Paarl Media Group has received the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC™ 01-31-346) in addition to being the first African printing organisation who received the FSC™ (Forest Stewardship Council™) CoC (Chain of Custody) certification.
“The PEFC accreditation applies to the Paarl Media Cape and Paarl Media Paarl plants and ensures that a fully audited and verified supply chain is used from forest to end use,” says Christoff Botha, executive director: heatset, Paarl Media Group.
“This certification confirms the paper used in the printing process originates from legal and sustainable sources. It warrants that biodiversity is maintained and enhanced; hazardous chemicals are prohibited and that the use of pesticides is minimised,” continues Botha.
The Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification is the world’s largest forest certification system which seeks to set standards and transform forest management around the world. Two thirds of all certified forests worldwide are certified by this organisation. This will ensure that everyone will be able to enjoy the environmental, social and economic benefits of forests for a long time to come. There are approximately 16 000 companies and organisations worldwide that have achieved PEFC Chain of Custody certification.
Consumers are becoming increasingly aware of their carbon footprint and are sourcing sustainable products more and more. These consumers are holding corporates responsible for forest management and demanding products that reflect their commitment to sustainability.
Botha says: “The PEFC logo is the stamp of approval that the highest standard of paper sourcing is upheld without exception. The certification allows the Group to use the PEFC logo on printed products, making Paarl Media the preferred supplier for responsible customers.”
Currently, 258 million hectares of forest area are managed in compliance with PEFC’s international benchmark. This is an area equivalent of the size of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden and the UK combined.
The PEFC accreditation reinforces the sustainability commitments of Paarl Media to implement environmentally stable business practices. The Group recently unveiled a biomass boiler which works towards minimising the company’s ecological impact.