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Sustainability and Southwest Business Products

Southwest Business has been an advocate of responsible environmental conservation for over 30 years. We are always striving for ways to improve our sustainability across the Country. Not only in our own manufacturing and sales centers, but in our supplier facilities as well. Here are just some of the ways Southwest is building a better tomorrow:

Canadian Manufacturer

Southwest Business is a Canadian Manufacturer with manufacturing capabilities in our Toronto Head Office as well as our Calgary, Alberta Plant. Not only do we manufacture the majority of our products in Canada, we also prioritize getting raw materials from Canadian sources. This means that over 65% of all the products Southwest sells are manufactured in Canada. Lowering carbon emissions and bringing as many jobs to the Canadian Marketplace as possible.

Recycling Programs

Southwest is part of two major recycling programs. The first is for paper. We have been affiliated with Hanna Paper Fibers since 2001 to recycle, reprocess and reuse all of our paper scraps. This recycling initiative has helped Southwest Business to save over 27,755 trees and 131,384 cubic feet of landfill space in total. These number are based on Hanna Paper Fibers’ research in which it found that it takes 19 trees to make 2200lbs of paper and 90 cubic feet to dispose of it.

The second recycling program is for our Vinyl Materials. Through A & B Plastics Co. Ltd., Southwest Business has been recycling all our vinyl scraps since 2004. Southwest uses Vinyl to produce Binders, Pouches, Certificate Holders, and much more. In 2021, we recycled over 49.242 lbs of vinyl. Once recycled, the vinyl gets re-processed into brand new rolls along with virgin material and shipped back to us. Depending on the colour and thickness, some rolls can even be made of 100% recycled vinyl!

Shipping and Packaging

Thanks to Greenwave Technology, Southwest is able to reuse every cardboard box that comes into the building for packaging filler. Available in a tabletop and free standing unit, the Greenwave cardboard perforator cuts down our used or damaged cardboard boxes making them perfect for filling up boxes to protect the items we are shipping out. Once the items are sent to our customers, they can then recycle the filler or use it again for their own shipping needs.

Our Partnership with Sustana Fiber and Rolland Paper Facility

For years, Southwest has been getting the paper for our Index and Plain Copier Tab Dividers from a Mill in St. Jerome, Quebec called Rolland Paper Facility. The Rolland paper facility has been reducing carbon emissions by 70,000 tons every year by using biogas rather than fossil fuels. Biogas is produced from decomposition of organic waste, which supplies 93% of the paper mill’s thermal energy needs. They have also reduced landfill space by 1 million cubic yards and use 6 times less water than the industry average. They even reuse each drop of water up to 30 times!

Not only that, but Rolland is a Sustana Company and get the raw materials for making the paper from Sustana Fiber, a recycled pulp facility located in Levis, Quebec where all the pulp is made out of 100% recycled content. This facility receives and processes up to 425 tons of recovered material per day. Diverting up to 850,000 pounds of material out of landfills daily.

The paper Southwest manufactures is made from 30% of this recycled fibers. By using recycled paper, Southwest participates in the circular economy and has contributed to Rolland and Sustana Fiber's environmental savings of over:

  • 7,620,000 trees
  • 3,210,000 BTUs of energy
  • 6,100,000 gallons of water
  • 26,000,000 pounds of disposal
  • 3,300,000,000 pounds of CO2

*Based on 2021 Sustana Fiber pulp facility numbers.

Recycled Materials

In addition to our Index and Plain Copier Tab Paper being made up of 30% recycled fiber, the board we use in our binders is made from 100% recycled fiber and is itself, 100% recyclable. The metals in our Binders are also recyclable.

Reusability

Part of lowering our environmental impact is being able to re-use items many times over. That’s why Southwest manufactures and sells many items in which can be used more than just once. Some of these items include Binders, Index Tabs, Plastic Comb Bindings, Lanyards, Pouches, Chicago Screws, Twin Pocket Folders, and many, many more. Just simply remove the old paper material these items were protecting, recycle the paper and insert the new information.

Plus with so many of these items being manufactured in Canada, you can be confident that you are buying high quality products that will last many uses.

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