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Being ‘green’ should be norm says Northern Flags

Being more mindful of the environment is increasingly becoming an important element while operating a business.

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Iain Clasper-Cotte is the managing director of Northern Flags

Northern Flags, which is based in Leeds, decided a few years ago that being more kind to the environment was just as important as growing a successful business.

Iain Clasper-Cotte is the managing director of the firm, and explains: “Over 5 years ago, after long concerns about environmental responsibility and sustainability we began to make changes to help us achieve our green vision.

“We’re not going to lie, it wasn’t easy. As a business in the manufacturing sector, it can be hard to know where to start. We spent long hours discussing, arguing, researching and developing the right processes that would allow us to make a difference.”

Clasper-Cotte also says that it shouldn’t be that companies should consider being green, it should be the “norm”.

Until sustainable business processes become standard in the print industry, and across all sectors, then we won’t see any meaningful change

“Until sustainable business processes become standard in the print industry, and across all sectors, then we won’t see any meaningful change,” says Clasper-Cotte. “Right now, we are seeing a lot of companies using green primarily as a PR push, but we genuinely seek to look beyond that. How do eco-friendly products and processes work?”

The pandemic, much like with many other business, affected Northern Flags, and Clasper-Cotte notes that Northern Flags even had to look at new markets. However, the managing director says that the slowing down of trade resulted in more time to look at being green and how the company can do more.

“We purposefully didn’t rely on the furlough scheme as much as other businesses, instead using the period to allow some of our team to really delve deep into the Action Now campaign and our green future,” explains Clasper-Cotte.

Being green should be the “norm” according to Northern Flags

The Action Now campaign is going to be like a “contract between us and our customers, and also our suppliers” says Clasper-Cotte. “We want to ensure that we are working with businesses who share our vision. If they don’t, then we can either try to educate them as to why becoming greener is so important or we move on and work with companies with more of a shared ideology.

“Happily, there is much more of a demand from our customers for eco-friendly products.”

On top of the Action Now campaign, Northern Flags are working towards ISO 140001 accreditation, and have most recently become a member of the SME Climate Hub. This is a commitment from small businesses to become carbon neutral by 2030. Clasper-Cotte hopes that Northern Flags will actually achieve this by 2025.

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