Poly-Version Takes Brand Assurance to a New Level, Pt. 2
Conserving Natural Resources
Helping our customers preserve the integrity of their brands means operating in a responsible, community-minded way. That’s why Poly-Version uses soy-based inks and 100 percent recycled paper.
Paper accounts for approximately half of our products’ overall environmental impact. To minimize this impact, we use recycled paper, which requires far less energy, water and chemicals to produce than paper made from trees. We found a 100 percent recycled sheet—made by FutureMark Paper Group in Manistique, Michigan—that meets our hair care customers’ technical specifications for paper while going above and beyond their environmental specifications. FutureMark’s 100 percent recycled sheet produces images that are sharp and bright, runs smoothly on our presses, folds crisply and holds a tight fold over time. While other types of paper could fulfill our technical requirements, FutureMark paper also delivers remarkable environmental benefits. According to the Environmental Paper Network’s Paper Calculator, Poly-Version saves approximately 13,500 trees, 3.5 million gallons of water and enough energy to power 160 American homes each year by printing on FutureMark 100 percent recycled paper instead of a non-recycled sheet. Multiply these annual savings by the 20+ years we have been using this same recycled paper and the conservation benefits are significant.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
In addition to using eco-friendly paper and inks, we have also implemented an aggressive “reduce, reuse, recycle” program. For example, rather than using individual cardboard lids for our product boxes, we designed a large lid that covers all boxes on each layer of the shipping pallet simultaneously. Poly-Version’s lids help stabilize products on the pallet and also reduce the amount of cardboard used in our packaging.
Two years ago, Poly-Version added Eyeglass Arm Protectors to its innovations and patents. These are protective sleeves that consumers can slip over the arms of their eyeglasses to protect them from hair dye. Poly-Version’s eyeglass arm protectors are laminated to instruction sheets alongside the plastic gloves, and they’re made from what would otherwise have been scrap plastic. Our eyeglass arm protectors put more of the plastic we buy to productive use, and it provides our hair care customers with a new amenity to offer consumers—64 percent of whom wear glasses, according to the Vision Council of America.
What paper and plastic we cannot use in our production process is recycled. As plastic gloves are sealed onto instruction sheets, the trimmed-off plastic scrap is instantly suctioned from our machines and blown into large recycling bins. Paper scraps are collected in separate bins. More than 90 percent of our waste is recycled. The income generated from our recycling program helps keep our costs down and prices competitive.
Some of the scrap generated during production and quality control are finished products in which the paper and plastic are sealed together. Because paper and plastic must be recycled separately, gloves and eyeglass arm protectors must be peeled from instruction sheets. To manually separate paper from plastic for recycling, Poly-Version entered into a relationship with a respected local organization that provides community-based programs and services to adults with developmental disabilities. The organization’s employees handle the manual separation and sorting and send the materials back to us. We can then recycle the paper and plastic, while supporting a charitable organization.
The ethos at Poly-Version of innovation, environmental stewardship and going beyond what’s simply required has earned us the loyalty of employees and customers. Most of our customers have been with us since Poly-Version’s inception in 1965. Our employees average 21 years with the company and are integral to our success. Their longevity with Poly-Version is a testament to the work environment, as well as to the healthcare and retirement benefits we offer. This level of loyalty—and the business stability that comes with it—does not come from being just another cost-efficient supplier.
In today’s business climate in which companies are increasingly linked to each other, Poly-Version has discovered that “what we make” is defined not just by our products but also by how we do business. In demonstrating good corporate citizenship, Poly-Version helps uphold the integrity of our customers’ hair care brands. Our customers realize—and value—that Poly-Version provides brand assurance through the supply chain. The hair care industry’s confidence in us has sustained Poly-Version for more than 43 years, and it will bolster our business for many years to come.
Phil Goldschmiedt is the owner of Poly-Version, Inc. (formerly a division of Tyco International), a New Jersey manufacturer of disposable gloves laminated to printed instruction sheets. Poly-Version supplies companies such as L’Oreal, Revlon and Clairol. He is also owner of YATZ Properties. Prior to Poly-Version, Phil spent 15 years in the music business as Production VP of the record label Audio Fidelity, which produced and distributed globally various genres of music. Phil received his BA from Queens College and graduate studies at St. John’s University.