I have since had a couple of interactions with Tara, the company owner, to ask about her business. I figured that using a cast iron machine dating from 1912 might have some environmental benefits over more modern methods of printing and she was cool enough to give me a brief breakdown of their developing kind practices (she is working on an environmentally practices section for their "about us" page):
- Current research for ink alternatives. Right now there is responsible disposable of materials. They aren't using soy-based inks yet because the soy washes may degrade the press and rollers and given that the press is vintage they can't afford to degrade the parts. I know, soy degrade stuff, WTH? It is a possibility based on degradation on steel machines that cannot be taken or else a machine that is almost 100 years old could be ruined.
- Re-use of paper not suitable for the client order
- Use of 100% cotton paper which requires fewer chemicals and produces less waste than tree based paper
- Eco-friendly paper source - Crane paper has an entire department devoted to minimizing their environmental impact (they even compost)
- Option of Porridge Papers (handmade, recycled paper)
- Ephemera is also a small-business that is operated out of a garage. They are small, local benefits of not commuting and using extra resources with being off-site are eco-friendly.