At Woodmansterne, we are committed to using sustainable materials and practices wherever possible. As a third-generation family business, we feel keenly the need to protect our environment and safeguard it for future generations.While we are proud of our environmental credentials, we are continually looking to learn, adapt and improve where we can by working closely with the best suppliers and by investing in skills and technologies.
We source the very best quality boards from specialist paper mills in Europe to make our greeting cards, and we since 2000 we have only used pulp from responsibly-managed forests to ensure our supply is sustainable and environmentally friendly.
- We are proud to use only FSC accredited board. Further detail can be found here www.fsc-uk.org/en-uk
- We are regularly reviewing and exploring the best ways to source paper in as efficient and environmentally-friendly manner as possible, while not compromising on quality.
We manufacture all our cards entirely in the UK: from the design, print and finish, through to the packing and distribution. By running our own award-winning manufacturing facility, we ensure high-quality results, and less waste.
- We manufacture in the UK – not in the Far East, which adds vastly more to a product’s carbon footprint.
- Our two working sites are well situated to utilise local expertise (Watford – a centre of print; Milton Keynes – the nation’s warehousing and distribution hub) and are less than 40 miles apart. Keeping close to main distribution hubs of key retailers helps in minimising carbon footprint from transportation.
- We source all our key materials from suppliers with whom we have close working relationships. This helps maintain a stable, efficient and reliable supply chain, crucial to ensuring our exacting standard of high-quality results and minimal waste.
In 2016, we began working with an expert mill in Italy to create a bespoke paper made from 100% recycled pulp. As a result of only using post-consumer waste pulp to make this envelope and insert paper, we have saved over 10,000 trees in the last two years!
- No trees were cut down to create this paper!
- This recycled paper is made to our bespoke requirements of colour, weight, texture and translucency (to prevent the card showing through the envelope).
Many shops sell unwrapped greetings cards, so why do we choose to wrap our cards? We believe that wrapping our cards keeps our unique envelope, insert and high-quality (and often highly-finished) card together and protects from damage caused by handling and scuffing.
- We are committed to finding new ways to bring you the very best product while reducing our use of plastics
- If we sold our cards unwrapped we believe the overall cost of damages, additional transport and replacements, would be higher than the current costs both environmentally and economically.
- The film we use to wrap the card, envelope and insert together in a bag is made from Oriented Polypropylene (OPP), a recyclable form of plastic.
- We were an early adopter of using plant-starch compostable bags in 2001, but they performed very poorly, actually degrading on retailer’s shelves before they were purchased! That said we are working hard to find a suitable replacement to our OPP bags.
- In the last few months, our Directors have attended forums on Packaging and Plastics, including:
- The Future of Plastic Packaging in the UK by Lord Deben
- Films, Pouches and Flexibles – Recycling for the Future at the Recoup Plastics Conference 2018
At Woodmansterne, we are passionate recyclers, and have worked hard to reduce the waste from our sites in Watford and Milton Keynes to just 6% going to landfill.
- One of the best ways to reduce the impact we have on the environment is to be as efficient as possible. We are firm believers and drivers of Continuous Improvement and Marginal Gains – processes we continue to hone by:
- Investing in people and their training
- Investing in equipment, and
- Ironing out inefficiencies to reduce lead times and waste
- We are proud to have an award-winning production facility in Watford, and an innovative and industry-leading Distribution Centre in Milton Keynes.
We have reduced our internal transportation carbon footprint by 56% since 2016, due to investment in new processes!
- In 2016, we successfully trialled an innovative transport solution from The Netherlands, which enables pallets to be stacked on top of each other during transportation.
- By investing in 40 of these units, we have halved our annual transport costs and carbon footprint, helping the business and the environment. Several of our suppliers and customers have been inspired to follow suit.
While we are fully committed to finding a better solution to recycling our products and packaging in the future, we want to take action NOW! We have begun by labelling all our products and packaging to help consumers recycle effectively.
- ‘Recycle me’ is a new message you’ll now see on our products and packaging. We are delighted that this logo has now been adopted by ‘Recycle Now’, the official national recycling campaign for England.
- We have started to include the logo for polypropylene on our bags so that it can be identified and recycled where possible (this will also ensure it doesn’t contaminate other plastics during the recycling process!)