23 Jun ‘CO2 neutral and PEFC certified’ – PEFC (Jun ’22)
With two sites in Belgium and France, the family-owned business is able to meet the challenges of supplies and tight deadlines while striving for carbon neutrality, to which PEFC certification contributes.
Daddy Kate has been a family-owned printing company for two generations. Today, the company has two PEFC-certified sites, one in Belgium and one in France. Daddy Kate aims to be a one-stop shop for its customers, a significant proportion of which are retail chains and communication agencies.
It offers a complete service for all types of printing: from offset to digital, including posters, displays and hyper-customisation. The company has a turnover of €25 million and employs more than 100 people in total. Interview with CEO Thijs Claes at the company’s headquarters on the outskirts of Brussels.
Supply challenges and tight deadlines
“Our main goal is to fulfil our promise to deliver to our customers within 1 to 3 days, depending on the type of printing. This differentiating factor is our biggest challenge in the current context of the paper industry. Today, delivery times are sometimes as long as 4 months. So we always have to maintain a huge stock and balance the availability of paper with the work that needs to be done.”
High demand for PEFC paper
The company has been active since the 1970s and has recently expanded its operations into northern France. “The demand for PEFC paper is very high in the French market. It is a standard requirement when ordering printed material. Therefore, when we acquired the French companies in late 2020, we rolled out PEFC certification for our different production sites, which we later centralised at one location.”
This market demand, long delivery times from suppliers and storage costs prompted Daddy Kate to support the industry’s call for more forest owners to become PEFC certified. The aim is to increase the supply of PEFC-certified raw materials locally.
CO²-neutral and PEFC-certification
“We are aiming for carbon neutrality by 2024 in terms of scope 1 and 2, the things we have control over. We are also taking actions for scope 3, the most demanding of the carbon-neutral label. This has a direct effect on our supply of raw materials. It includes indirect emissions, especially emissions related to purchases. These generally represent the largest part of the carbon footprint. This reinforces our decision to subscribe to PEFC certification for our paper orders.
Local PEFC timber and the impact of transport on sustainability goals
Some of Daddy Kate’s main suppliers of PEFC-certified paper in fact source their pulp from PEFC-certified forests in Belgium and neighbouring countries (almost 90% of certified forests in Belgium and neighbouring countries are PEFC-certified). This kind of short circuit is a specificity of PEFC and represents added value for the sustainability goals Daddy Kate has set.
Revaluation of paper
“I am very optimistic about the future of paper. The market is doing better than you would think, despite the development of digital. For example, one of our partners in the retail sector had started a large-scale development of digital promotional materials in shops. They soon had to reverse their decision when they discovered that paper was still popular with their customers. The perception and use of the paper resource has changed. It is being reinvented, it has to be more qualitative, offer something special and be personalised. This revaluation of paper is an undeniable evolution.