Are your marketing campaigns truly sustainable?

March 2020

Print media spend is the third largest in the world but is it damaging the environment? 

“Go Paperless”, “Go Green” and “Save Trees” are common messages seen these days as many organisations encourage their customers to switch to electronic transactions and communications. But are these appeals based on fact? 

These sort of messages give the impression that electronic communication is more environmentally friendly than traditional, paper-based communication. But it is very difficult to make such a statement without considering the full lifetime impact of these different mediums.

To date, over 500 of the world’s largest organisations have been found to be using greenwash statements in their communications. Of those, around 70% have removed their misleading statements as a direct result of being challenged by Two Sides. 

Whistl have teamed up with Two Sides who have conducted some research on this topic and have produced an overview of the myths and facts on print marketing material. Take a look at some of the myths below or read the full report here

The European paper industry is a leading recycler

Paper is recycled, on average, 3.6 times a year in Europe*, while 53% of the fibre for Europe’s paper industry is from paper for recycling.**

The European paper recycling rate is 72%, which is approaching the practical theoretical maximum recycling rate of 78%.*

*European Paper Recycling Council, Monitoring Report 2017.
**CEPI Key Statistics, 2018.

Print and paper 1

Paper is based on wood, a natural and renewable material

As trees grow they absorb CO2 from the atmosphere. Furthermore, as a wood product, paper also continues to store carbon throughout its lifetime. 

The paper industry uses respected certification schemes to ensure that the paper you use originates from a sustainable forest source. The two most recognised certification schemes are the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification™ (PEFC™).

Print and paper 2


Download the full report here



Sustainability facts 

Utility importance of customer service

Paper and printing

The print sector is one of the lowest industrial emitters of greenhouse gases.

CO2 emmisions

Direct CO2

The direct emissions of the European pulp and paper industry reduced by 25% between 2005 and 2017.


Electronic waste

In 2016 alone 44.7 million tonnes of electronic waste were generated globally.


Sustainable resource

Paper is made from wood, which is a truly renewable and sustainable resource.


Discover more myths and facts in the full report... 



Share this article

Whether you’re new to Whistl, one of our customers or just want to ask some questions we’d love to chat!
01628 702 965
Or let us give you some ideas on how we can help you drive your business forward. Tell us a bit about yourself