Thursday, July 9, 2009

NAPL Nominates AGC for an Environmental Award

"We are delighted to provide this letter of support for AGC’s nomination for the Northeast Ohio Environmental Award. AGC is a member in good standing with NAPL, the National Association for Printing Leadership. NAPL is a not-for-profit business management association representing progressive leadership companies in the $120+ billion graphic communications industry. Located in Cleveland, OH, AGC is a full-service, eco-friendly marketing communications company and was recognized by NAPL this year for a Marketing Award in green/sustainability efforts in the printing industry.

Nominated Program: AGC has produced a capabilities brochure in a desk calendar format. Entitled 52 Weeks 52 Works, the project highlighted ways community businesses could be more environmentally friendly in producing their own corporate material. In addition, the project showed how AGC is leading the way toward more environmentally conscious work processes through its own continuous improvement and integration of new environmentally friendly technologies into its manufacturing processes.

Community Needs Addressed: AGC recognizes that environmental sustainability is a community-wide effort. The project was designed to showcase local talent to create greater awareness of resources available in the community and highlight how innovative, forward-thinking individuals and groups can draw on each other’s expertise to make a bigger difference together. As part of the project, AGC developed a list of best practices local businesses could use when undertaking new communications projects including using nontoxic soy and vegetable-based inks and varnishes and looking for FSC certified business partners.

Innovative Solutions: The AGC project notes that: “Images are powerful marketing tools.” The entire project is a graphic symbol of how to produce an effective marketing piece while maintaining environmental stewardship. AGC is becoming a local thought leader on how to approach a traditional communications effort in an innovative and environmentally consciousness- raising way. In teaching about environmental alternatives including not only recycled paper, but recycled inks and solvents, AGC is encouraging change in standard business communication procedures while leading by example.

Effect or Impact: AGC has been proactive in teaching clients to consider the entire life-cycle of a product or campaign from raw material usage to end use and disposal. The calendar is well known throughout the creative community as an outlet for highlighting local talent. By dedicating this familiar vehicle to environmental messaging, the project sought to invoke change through a ripple effect, providing a strong message and environmentally sound options currently available to those responsible for other local business marketing efforts. In addition, many of AGC’s clients are nonprofit organizations in northern Ohio including education and health care organizations. By demonstrating their services, AGC is encouraging other organizations on lean budgets to consider environmental alternatives for their business communications needs.

Leadership Qualities: The high quality project demonstrates that environmental products and production processes have improved to the point where no compromises are necessary for businesses to achieve effective and excellent effectiveness in their own customer outreach efforts. In order to produce the piece, AGC, itself, has undergone substantial changes in its production processes. As a result, it was the first commercial printing facility in Ohio to be dual certified by both the Forest Stewardship Council and Sustainable Forestry Initiative. It invested heavily in upgrading equipment throughout the print cycle and exclusively uses EcoPride process inks and varnishes. Its comprehensive recycling program goes beyond most printers who simply use recycled paper and AGC’s processes includes a zero waste management system. AGC applies the same stringent standards to its own partners and vendors, thereby encouraging a complete Chain of Custody sustainability program.

When discussing environmental concerns, there is much hype put out by key lobbying groups on the negative impact paper, inks and print can have on the environment. Much less is known about the industry’s dedication to forest stewardship and ongoing commitment to environmentally friendly means of helping people communicate effectively. Personal communication is a key human trait, and electronic communication vehicles appear to be environmentally friendly but use enormous energy resources largely unaccounted for by many who purport to be environmentally friendly. Through its unique efforts, AGC has stayed committed to the print medium and its potential to make a difference in people’s lives while demonstrating how environmental issues can be proactively addressed.

Please consider AGC for this prestigious local award. They are certainly deserving."

Submitted by:

Rhona Bronson
SVP Marketing
75 W. Century Rd., Suite 100
Paramus, NJ 07652