Manufacturing Process

Independent Printing focuses on instituting environmentally efficient manufacturing processes whenever possible.

Our current presses utilize CIP4 technology, which sends prepress ink settings to each individual printing station at press. CIP4 reduces the amount of makeready time, and keeps paper usage to an absolute minimum. We have dramatically reduced the number of sheets used in each makeready by 200 sheets, on average. This saves over 600,000 sheets per year.

A recently-installed automated ink system is anticipated to reduce our ink consumption by 15-20%. Now we use airtight containers which eliminate all dried ink from our containers – no more wasting dried ink from the top of traditional cans. In addition, the system keeps a minimum level of ink in the fountain, reducing the amount which may need to be disposed of at the end of each run.

The installation of our newest 40” press has resulted in the reduction of blanket wash use from 75 gallons/week to 15 gallons/week. This will serve to dramatically lower our VOC emissions into the future.

We instituted the use of alcohol-free wetting agents in our fountain solutions over 10 years ago, long before it was mandated. Today, we always base our fountain solution purchasing decisions on environmental impact and compliance.

We proactively monitor our wastewater. Our wastewater is tested annually to ensure that all applicable environmental standards are met, or exceeded, including chemical component and pH levels.

Independent printing takes great pride in recycling as much of our waste stream as possible, as noted in the following points:

Ink: Laboratory evaluation of Independent’s waste inks indicates that it is a non-hazardous waste and is, therefore, non-regulated. Although we could send the waste ink to a land fill, Independent chooses to dispose of it in a more environmentally-responsible fashion by contracting with a local disposal service. On a monthly basis, that service picks up the waste inks which are stored in 55-gallon drums. The waste ink is then fuel-blended. The drums are also recycled, unless there’s too much ink residue, in which case they are fuel-blended. Ashes from the fuel blending process are used as a component in cement.

Press solvents/blanket wash: Independent has installed a solvent recycling system that distills used solvent, purifying it for reuse. This has reduced the amount of virgin solvent we purchase and has also eliminated waste solvent being shipped off-site. The solid ink remnants are shipped off-site through our disposal service. This waste is fuel-blended.

Rag washing: Independent contracts with a licensed service for solvent rag washing. Rags are picked up on a weekly basis, washed, and returned. The service has a wastewater treatment plant that treats the water from washing prior to going into the sewer system.

Silver residue: Silver residue has virtually been eliminated as we no longer expose and process film. We have eliminated our camera and image setter which were the major sources of silver.

Aluminum and Film: Aluminum plates and exposed film from historical files are picked up and recycled on a regular basis. During 2012, we recycled over 27.4 tons of aluminum plates.

Paper: Waste paper is recycled through a company that uses the paper in the manufacture of a variety of products, including paper toweling and tissue. During 2012, Independent recycled 2,172 tons of paper.


p: 800.443.6771
f: 888.336.6118
a: 1801 Lawrence Dr, PO Box 5790, De Pere, WI 54115