For years, even decades companies throughout the world have participated in the global movement towards the responsible livelihood of the 3R’s- Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. As GFI grows so does the amount of corrugated paper (aka cardboard), Styrofoam, and plastic wrap & bags to dispose of given the substantial packaging requirements of the copiers, printers, and accessories we sell. In 2009 this waste added up to 120 tons of material, which was all disposed of in landfills. Even though GFI had been sending obsolete copiers and printers to a recycling facility for years the only one of the three R’s being practiced for packaging waste was the reuse of plastic bags from copier packaging as trash bags in the warehouse. Since 2009, GFI has made significant changes to reduce in waste.
In 2010 GFI reduce the amount of materials we disposed of in landfills by establishing a recycling program for all of our corrugated paper, plastic wrap, and non-confidential office paper. Our waste company set up 2 – 40 yard dumpsters behind the St. Louis warehouse, one dedicated to waste disposal and dedicated to recycled materials. This program reduced GFI’s landfill waste by 54%.
Listening to our customers’ concerns regarding the responsible disposal of their empty toner cartridges GFI set out in 2011 to partner with an environmentally responsible company to recycle toner cartridges. One of our longstanding vendors, Katun, presented a highly effective and responsible solution with their toner recovery program. Katun’s toner recovery program is a no cost solution for our customers that allow them to send empty toner cartridges back to the manufacturer to recycle or reuse. With this program GFI stores an inventory of empty toner return boxes to ship to customer locations in bundles of four. Each box is affixed with a prepaid UPS shipping label, so there is no cost to the customer to ship the box when it is full.
For several years we have worked to source a recycler for these materials and in May of 2012 GFI partnered with MRC to recycle of all of our styrofoam packaging and wood pallets. With this new partnership GFI now recycles an estimated 98% of materials that come through our doors. In addition, MRC is an R2 certified recycler, which designates them as a nationally recognized processor and recycler of metals, electronics products, and other related materials. Because of this R2 designation GFI has shifted all of our obsolete copier and printer recycling to MRC. Responsible sustainability of the environment and reducing waste is the responsibility of every company and something that GFI has taken seriously given the efforts over the last three years to become earth’s favorite copier dealer.