One Company’s Waste, Is Another Company’s Resource

One Company’s Waste, Is Another Company’s Resource

February 7, 2019

NISP

“A business led initiative that uses the industrial symbiosis approach to create new market opportunities. It also increases the range of resources that have commercial value. This means adding to the bottom line and improve resource efficiency.”

Win/Win/Win

Associated Labels and Packaging participated in this program to discover if our waste could be turned into another companies input. The program was pretty simple in design. Companies were invited to fill out as many “Haves” on a green info card (this could include waste, unwanted resources, services, vacant warehouse space etc). This was followed by your “Wants” on a yellow info card (similar to haves, but also included information requests). The results would be shared amongst each table and people would write their names on either cards to make connections or referrals.

Example

Associated Labels and Packaging recycles shipping shrink wrap, which likely gets sent to China to process into who knows what. Instead, this plastic can be sent to a local company who can use the shrink as an input to create their products. This process accomplishes the following:

  • Hauling and dumping fees are removed
  • Our truck can simply add this stop to it’s local delivery
  • Receiving company gets a free resource
  • Resource remains in local circular economy
  • There is less environmental impact and virgin materials created
  • Associated Labels and Packaging can get closer to zero waste!

Roadblocks

Associated Labels and Packaging creates continuous, and for the most part unavoidable label and flexible packaging waste. These products have zero end value since they cannot be separated into their original components. This unfortunately means most of the time this product ends up either in the landfill or incinerator for energy. Our suppliers have no solution, however there is a small glimmer of hope in Iowa of all places.

Continuous Materials Recovery  takes all paper and plastic waste and transforms it into building materials for exterior walls and commercial roofs. Unfortunately Iowas is a staggering 3,000km (1,864 miles) away. NEXT Steps>>> Feasibility study on using Continuous Materials Recovery.

Connect

If you have any suggestions, or have heard any solutions out there, I would love to hear them! Direct your message to info@associated-labels.com, Jay Ashworth, Sustainability Manager.

To learn more about NISP’s local, national and international programs click here.

 

To Incinerate, or not to Incinerate!

November 28, 2018

Production

The printing industry has always struggled with its waste, even with recent technological advances. Our facility here in Metro Vancouver produces both labels and packaging which have their own separate challenges. Labels themselves are constructed with layers of paper stock, inks, adhesives and laminates. Labels applied to packaging are usually removed through the recycling process and likely are incinerated or put in the landfill.

Packaging on the other hand (such as stand-up pouches) are constructed with multiple layers of plastics, inks, adhesives, lacquers and laminates. To add to the complexity of packaging, each layer of plastic can be a different substrate. This means the final construction turns the package into recycle number 7, which is not recyclable. At best, companies are chipping the material and creating pellets to sell as alternate fuel.

Technology

As a company in the Pacific North West, we struggle to keep our byproducts in a circular economy. We have heard of companies in Europe who have made flooring out of label and packaging waste. That said, it’s just not practical or environmentally sustainable to send our waste halfway around the world. Therefore, we look to the options available to us: Landfill or Incineration. Do we burry our waste which will break down slowly over a couple centuries; or do we burn our waste and create energy for homes which will break down over a couple of hours? Both options aren’t great, especially when considering the “allowable emissions” regulations set by governments for incineration.

Issues

The challenge is real, and just when you think you have found a solution, another issue emerges. This occurred when our team visited the incineration plant for a tour. When speaking with the crane operator, we discovered that our waste (which is sometimes on a roll) is too dense to breakdown and will actually roll off the conveyor belt. This means the extra transport time and dumping costs to the incinerator have been for the most part, a waste of resources. So our research department is back to the drawing board, all while thinking “To Incinerate or not to Incinerate!” That is the question… where is Shakespeare when you need him?

 

To look further into the incineration process click here

“War on Plastic Reaches Packaging Industry”

November 19, 2018

Labels and Labelling Magazine approached Associated Labels and Packaging here in Vancouver after discovering the news regarding our innovation in Stand-up Pouch products. The following is a segment taken from the article. These are the changes that we require to move closer to a world with less waste. Step by step we will get to that place.

Article:

“…Still, the multi-laminate constructions of flexible packaging are too difficult to separate and recycle at most municipal facilities; the majority end up in the landfill. It’s with that in mind that Vancouver-based Associated Labels and Packaging has created what it calls North America’s first non-GMO, ‘backyard compostable’ stand-up pouch.

Associated Labels and Packaging says the ‘earth-friendly’ pouches start composting in sixty days, and depending in climate and conditions, will turn into compost within 180 days. The pouches are created with layers of eucalyptus trees and corn starch. ‘To empower consumers to divert their packaging waste from landfill to compost is a huge step in the right direction,’ says Associated Labels sustainability manager Jay Ashworth.

He says the product is popular with many socially and environmentally responsible companies. Associated Labels and Packaging can run the substrate through its new HP Indigo 20000 digital press, and also has a variety of offset and gravure printing capabilities.

‘People are starting to become more aware of the impact packaging has on the environment,’ Ashworth says. ‘I think it’s been gaining moment for a while now. Debating climate change is irrelevant; we just need to start doing what is right for the environment. And now people are willing to invest in material that won’t stay in a landfill forever.’”

To read the full article click Article Source

BiV Award – Biggest Manufacturers in Metro Vancouver

May 16, 2018

Our Company

Associated Labels and Packaging has been recognized by Business in Vancouver in the category “Biggest Manufacturers in Vancouver.” We have three facilities that operate nearly 24/7 and 365 days a year. Our humble beginnings started in 1980 with three employees and one press located in East Vancouver. Now we have expanded to over 200 employees and over 40 presses and associated machines. Our company offers labels and packaging such as bar wrappers, stick packs, tea sachets, shrink sleeves, stand-up pouches, and lidding film. To show our commitment to the food and beverage industry, our company became IFS PACsecure certified. This is the highest global standard a company can achieve in creating “food safe” labels and packaging.

Forward Motion

We took four years to research and develop North America’s first Non-GMO, fully backyard compostable stand-up pouch. We have created outstanding customer service and premium products. AssociatedLP has become the largest and leading label and packaging supplier in Western Canada and the Pacific North West. And we look forward to future awards as we continue to improve through state of the art technology and interdepartmental training. Recognizing and problem solving for our customers lead times, cost or shelf life is where we shine. We look forward to helping customers reach their best possible label and packaging outcomes.

Thank you to Business in Vancouver for recognizing our companies achievements!

Jay Ashworth – Sustainability Manager

 

 

 

Associated Labels Launches HP Indigo 20000 Digital Printing Press

January 11, 2018

 

Associated Labels and Packaging, a leading labels and packaging converter in Western Canada, has completed installation of an HP Indigo 20000 digital press, as it expands its sustainability offering, including digital printing of flexible packaging on eco-friendly materials.

The HP Indigo 20000 digital press doubles digital capacity for Associated Labels and Packaging, operating until now its digital services with two HP Indigo WS6800 digital presses. The 30-inch press will also allow the converter to deliver digitally printed flexible packaging and pouch applications to complement its wide-web flexo printing.

‘The addition of the Indigo 20000 will allow us to provide the market with unlimited short-run packaging. In the past, it was cost prohibitive due to minimum orders. With this technology we can now produce smaller runs for market testing and development, and also stay profitable on smaller runs from existing key customers,’ said Shaun Ashworth, Associated Labels and Packing president.

The Vancouver-area converter, serving western Canada and the Pacific Northwest, has invested in a sustainability program as a strategic company mission, developing a unique backyard compostable stand-up pouch product. The film is also running on the HP Indigo 20000, opening new marketing opportunities.

According to Jay Ashworth, marketing and sustainability manager, specialty brands, including boutique organic and natural products, are increasingly interested in a fully sustainable packaging solution as part of their product marketing. ‘With digital printing on eco film, these innovative products can enjoy high-quality packaging SKUs, test market interest and also stay true to their eco-values.’ he said.

Since starting in a small label printing plant in Vancouver in 1981 Associated Labels and Packaging has grown to over 100,000 square feet, with 24 hour-a-day press runs.

Article Source 

 

THE MONSTERS ARE COMING!!! Are you ready?

September 12, 2017

The days are getting shorter and darker, Halloween is coming closer, and monster sightings are on the rise. Time to empower your kids to fight back with their very own MONSTER SPRAY!!! The very eye catching metallic label stock is even more mesmerizing in person. Come by and pick one up at or reception and see for yourself!

Women Outnumber Men at Our Office #Proud

March 8, 2017

 

 

Out of 49 office staff, 26 of this positions are held by women in Sales, Administration, Accounting and the Art Department. All of our office staff have access to benefits including paid education in their related field, or a field which they would like to grow into. Our office culture has always been a strong family, and within our family we practice respect for one another. We believe that we already model well the UN theme for “Women in the Changing World of Work: Planet 50-50 by 2030.”

The UN recommendations are quite straight forward: “We want to construct a different world of work for women. As they grow up, girls must be exposed to a broad range of careers, and encouraged to make choices that lead beyond the traditional service and care options to jobs in industry, art, public service, modern agriculture and science. We have to start change at home and in the earliest days of school, so that there are no places in a child’s environment where they learn that girls must be less, have less, and dream smaller than boys. This will take adjustments in parenting, curricula, educational settings, and channels for everyday stereotypes like TV, advertising and entertainment; it will take determined steps to protect young girls from harmful cultural practices like early marriage, and from all forms of violence.”

Actions speak louder than words… contact our HR Manager if you want to be considered for any future positions that may come up. hr@associated-labels.com or check out our contact us page http://associated-labels.com/contact-us/

 

 

Print Smart; Flexographic Printing vs. Digital Printing Infographic

March 2, 2017

 

Video: Creating a Stand-Up Pouch

December 7, 2016

Have you ever wondered what goes into making your Stand-Up Pouch? Associated Labels and Packaging has created this quick clip to demonstrate what goes into this complex process.

Once your artwork has been thoroughly examined and approved by our in-house art department, we are able to create printing plates. These plates are sent to our press for set up. Our quality control team will conduct checks at various stages of the printing process to ensure our premium standards are met. Once the stock has been printed (and if required), we then send the printed rolls to another machine to be lacquered, followed by an additional machine to be laminated. Still two more machines left in the process! We need to slit or cut the rolls (which can be printed more than one across) to be able to fit our pouching machine. Finally the pouching machine folds, punches, heat seals the zipper and finally cuts the Stand-Up Pouch off the roll, ready for use!

As the flexible packaging industry gets more and more complicated, Associated Labels and Packaging is at the head of the pack. After four years of research and development, our team produced North Americas first Non-GMO, Backyard Compostable, Stand-Up Pouch. We are proud to be able to offer companies this environmentally sustainable alternative.

We also want to give a shout out to Sugar 2.0; such an amazing company to work with. It’s also nice to work with companies who are doing things to change the face of their industry. Sugar 2.0 “started with one father’s desire to lower his kids’ sugar intake — with a solution they’d actually love.”

For more information on flexible packaging and stand-up pouches click here: Stand-Up Pouches

Contact sales@associated-labels.com  to get your order started.

Written by Jay Ashworth

UPDATE! associatedLP Helps WIN National Competition – “Communities in Bloom”

November 16, 2016
Associated Labels and Packaging staff volunteer their time

Associated Labels and Packaging staff volunteer their time

The City of Coquitlam hosted judges from Canada’s Communities in Bloom Competition last summer. Judges came by our location as part of the grand tour and we showed them our facility and of course the bee hives and surrounding gardens. We are so happy to have had the opportunity to participate and help our city win!

The original article can be viewed here

Promotional Video of the City of Coquitlam, cities in bloom

Original Profile Book Supplied by the City of Coquitlam

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