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Irwin Hodson: climate-friendly printing

Press release from the issuing company

American printers Irwin Hodson Press from Portland, Oregon, who recently took delivery of a 10-colour UV perfecting press of the medium-format KBA Rapida 105 series, are since the beginning of May also the first print company in the region to offer its customers climate-neutral products. 

For Irwin Hodson Press, this possibility was the logical next stage in its implementation of a comprehensive sustainability strategy. Long-term further development of the corporate environmental philosophy and the minimisation of climate impacts are placed firmly in the foreground.
From carbon footprint to climate-neutral production

Irwin Hodson Press attaches particular significance to reducing its emissions of damaging greenhouse gases into the atmosphere as far as possible. The CO2 emissions of a print company arise from its energy consumption, transport processes, papers, inks, coatings and a variety of further factors. And so ClimatePartner California Inc. was called in to determine the relevant carbon footprint for the overall company operations and on this basis to give recommendations on potential for effective reductions. With an individualised emissions calculator, Irwin Hodson Press is now able to quote the specific emissions attributable to every print job. As an additional service to customers, these emissions can then be compensated through the purchasing of carbon offset certificates issued to support recognised climate protection projects. Printed products of all kinds, from flyers to business cards, can thus be ordered with a neutral impact on the Earth's climate.
The Portland-based company has long since gained a reputation as a role model when it comes to climate-friendly business. “Alongside FSC certification and our contribution to the PGE initiative ‘Save more, matter more’, we are also supporting the establishing and use of renewable energies in Oregon,” says Ken Kozol, vice-president for production. Irwin Hodson Press has furthermore decided to join the Climate Leaders programme of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the aim of which is to develop sustainable climate protection strategies for and with its partner companies. An environmental management programme is anchored securely in corporate thinking, and the use of efficient and at the same time ecological technologies is considered a matter of course in Portland. The green awareness of the workforce is similarly important, and all employees are encouraged to form carpools or to use bicycles or public transport for the journey to work.
Recognising the signs of the times

“We are proud of our sustainability commitment and would like to pass the idea on to our customers,” as Ken Kozol explains. “With ClimatePartner, we have found the ideal ally.” ClimatePartner has already gathered extensive experience in the field of sustainable media production on the German and European markets, and is accepted as an expert for voluntary climate protection in the print industry. “We are pleased that Irwin Hodson Press is making use of the opportunities for active contribution,” says Katharina Riess from ClimatePartner California Inc.
Rapida 105 integral to the sustainability strategy
One key element of the sustainability strategy is the new press installed just a few months ago: A 35-metre-long, 14-unit KBA Rapida 105 (predecessor series of today's Rapida 106) with UV facilities. It is the first sheetfed offset press from KBA at Irwin Hodson Press, and the undisputed showpiece in the print room, which it shares with further medium-format presses from other manufacturers. Unusual for a 10-colour perfector is the configuration with five printing units and an inline coater between two dryer towers before the perfecting unit, and then another five printing units and a further coater before the dryers in the press delivery. Unique features such as the sidelay-free infeed DriveTronic SIS and the high level of automation, with fully automatic plate changers, washing systems, KBA Densitronic Professional colour measurement and control, and the KBA Logotronic production management system, reduce makeready times and start-up waste to an absolute minimum. A reel-to-sheet feeder permits the use of more favourably priced reel stocks and further enhances the productivity of longer runs. With the two coater towers before and after the perfecting unit, it is possible to coat both sides of the sheet in a single pass, alongside additional finishing effects guaranteed to catch the imagination of agency customers. “With the new press, we have the perfect means to differentiate ourselves from the rest of the market,” says president and CEO T.J. McDonald. “It underlines our role as innovation-oriented pioneers. And we can also offer our customers whole new possibilities for their product design and refinement. There is probably no-one else on the West Coast who can match our new KBA Rapida.”