Tom Keighley

Bdaily talks carbon balancing with Tony Mullarkey

Ahead of this year’s Big Eco Show Bdaily is talking to key partners of the event, to get their take on the North East’s eco-efforts. This week, we talk to Tony Mullarkey, operations director at Potts Print UK.

Potts Print (UK) are a Cramlington-based business on a mission to bring sustainability into the world of printing. In what is traditionally a waste-intensive industry, Potts have really set their stall out to become sector leaders in a green revolution for printing.

Operations director Tony Mullarkey is set to share his experiences of the road to sustainability when he takes to the stage at the Big Eco Show in September. Few are as candid about their attitudes towards green issues as Tony, and his genuine enthusiasm for driving sustainable business process is only slightly tempered by a down-to-earth realism on the nuts and bolts of changing production processes.

“Basically, we have adopted these processes because it’s the right thing to do. That’s the short answer. But there’s also so much opportunity for businesses in getting to grips with sustainable processes. We have actually strengthened our proposition to clients, and have secured more business as a result.”

Tony has overseen a number of initiatives within Potts to help balance the carbon consumption of the business. For instance, the introduction of vegetable based inks has enabled the firm to stop using traditional inks known for their polluting properties, and removing alcohol from the pressing process has also reduced waste.

He talks about how the sustainability agenda has extended beyond the walls of the print shop floor. As well as employee car share schemes and recycling remits, Tony and his team have actively passed on their knowledge in order to win further business. He adds: “We’ve started to educate our clients too. I’ve been out on the road with some of our sales guys, and the response is fantastic. If we can demonstrate how printing fewer items will save them money then they’re really happy, and it cements our position as a trusted supplier. I think there’s a real opportunity for businesses to educate their supply chain too, and this is one of things I’ll be talking about at the Big Eco Show.”

The enthusiasm for Potts’ own ‘green revolution’ has also spilled into enthusiasm for the region as a whole. Tony explains: “On the back of these Olympics, which have brought the country into the limelight, we should take the opportunity to move forward and bring bigger and better changes in the North East. We can be a standard bearer for this type of business thinking, and in turn it will bring further business and investment to the area.”

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