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How the print-on-demand industry is revolutionizing sustainability

Author: Anna R. December 04, 2023.


In today's world, when climate change and resource scarcity are more present than ever, the pursuit of sustainability has become an essential aspect of society. Consumers are also increasingly looking to use environmentally friendly alternatives when shopping, which is challenging companies to adapt their operations to the demands of a more sustainable world. In this context, the print-on-demand industry is also becoming increasingly important due to its resource-saving nature.  

The print-on-demand model is characterized by the fact that products are only produced when ordered, i.e. on demand. The following presents the advantages of this business model in terms of sustainability.  

1) Less waste and avoid overproduction

The basic approach of the print-on-demand model is already sustainable. In contrast to traditional production methods, in which large quantities are pre-produced and stored, with print on demand only what was actually ordered is produced. This not only reduces overproduction and waste, but also minimizes the need for storage space and energy, resulting in an overall reduction in environmental footprint. While in many large retail productions a large number of textiles have to be disposed of or even burned, in print on demand only a minimal proportion of returns remains. At MarketPrint these end up as donations.  

2) Plastic free shipping

Many companies are already using alternative packaging materials to reduce plastic waste. There are now numerous ways to prepare products for shipping using environmentally friendly options. At MarketPrint, all products are carefully packaged without the use of plastic. In order to protect the textiles as much as possible and transport them safely to the customers, they are packed in satin paper.  

3) Short delivery routes

Compared to other business models in online retail, the delivery routes for print on demand are as short as possible. Thanks to our strategically good location in the south of Germany, we ensure short shipping routes throughout the German-speaking area. By connecting partner printing companies throughout Europe, transport routes for international shipping will also be further shortened, which should minimize CO2 emissions. 

4) Environmentally friendly printing inks

Many printing inks contain harmful chemicals. More and more printing companies are therefore using environmentally friendly printing inks and processes. MarketPrint also only uses environmentally friendly printing inks to ensure that our products are both high quality and environmentally responsible.  

5) Fair working conditions

The social pillar of sustainability is also not neglected in the print-on-demand industry. There are very good working and production conditions, especially in German printing companies. At MarketPrint, we also regularly visit our suppliers to ensure that the conditions there are right and that we can process the products with a clear conscience.  

The print-on-demand industry has recognized that sustainability is not just a trend, but a necessity. The underlying principle of the business model of only producing products when needed effectively combats overproduction and waste. This not only leads to a reduction in the ecological footprint, but also minimizes the need for storage space and energy. From the printing process to delivery, additional environmentally friendly decisions are made in order to act sustainably in all areas.  

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