Vegetables Inks vs Petroleum Based Inks – DebbiePosted: May 24, 2011
Petroleum Based Inks
Uses a mixture of water resins, pigments, and a variety of metals such as barium, copper and zinc. When used, the water waste from the printing press, can leach these toxic metals into the soil and groundwater.The problem with petroleum based ink is that the petrol and alcohol content evaporates in the drying process, releasing up to 30% VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) into the atmosphere. Solvents are also required to clean the press after use – solvents are another source of VOCs. Petroleum based ink is also harder to de-ink when being recycled, which results in toxic waste.
Vegetable Based Ink
The base liquid for this ink is made from a variety of vegetable oils such as corn, walnut, coconut, linseed, canola and soy bean.Soy ink is made from soybean oil, pigments, resins and waxes. Vegetable based ink takes longer to dry but, as a result, releases only around 2-4% VOCs into the atmosphere. Vegetable oils are a renewable resource, unlike petroleum. Solvents are not required for cleaning the press.Vegetable based ink is also much easier to de-ink when recycling and results in much less hazardous waste.
However, we are also very aware of the fact that only 33% of the soybeans produced in 2008 came from the US and many acres of forrest and rainforest in other countries are being cut down in order to provide room for soy bean growing farms.