Pushing Ahead with Deinking

Laurel Brunner's picture
Laurel Brunner

The work on ISO 21331, the ISO standard for assessing the deinkability potential of printed matter, is mired in industry politics. However the market really doesn’t care a jot and is moving on regardless. This is a problem for the maneuvering politicians in the paper industry because it means that the market is shifting further away from current practises. The most visible example of this is the work digital press manufacturers are doing on deinking. There are now at least six digital press manufacturers working on new approaches to deinking in order to ensure that digital prints are recyclable.

The politics surrounding ISO 21331 are all about protecting the existing deinking model for conventional offset and toner based digital printing. The paper industry’s preferred method was developed decades ago and wholly unsuitable for many digital prints or for flexo printing. Outpaced and outmoded, it is being rapidly overtaken by developments in the graphics industry.

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The Verdigris Project investigates the environmental impact of print media and provides information about sustainability initiatives for the international printing community. Keep up to date with the weekly Verdigris blog by Laurel Brunner.