ImagesMagUK_June_2021 44 images JUNE 2021 PRINT & EMBROIDERY CONSUMABLES endocrine-disrupting activity in fish and other animal populations. Permatone inks are 85% bio- degradable, and vegan: the inks’ ingredients are not sourced from animals or tested on animals. The inks’ ingredients that are sourced from plants are certified GMO (genetically modified organism)-free. They are made using 100% renewable energy, with zero emissions. Our solar array produces twice as much electricity as we use ourselves, so we pump surplus clean energy back into the grid. In our production facility, water, paper and metals are recycled. We seek sustainability in our manufacturing and are committed to investing in the research and development of eliminating harmful chemicals from all What was your motivation for developing a range of organic- approved inks? We didn’t actually set out to develop an organic ink. We developed a solvent- free ink system around 2003/4 that emerged as Permaset Aqua. On the back of that, Sericol approached us to develop a colour-matching range to work under its colour-matching software. That became the Permatone range, which was launched in 2005. A few customers suggested that it would be great if we had organic approval. We were really close with the range we had, so with only a few minor tweaks we were able to obtain Gots-approval from the Soil Association in 2012. The Permatone ink range was the first from outside the UK to be thus approved and it remains an achievement of which we are immensely proud. What were the main challenges you faced when developing the Permatone products? Colormaker are committed environmentalists. We developed the ink because we really wanted to do something to help save the world and make screen printing safer for our customers, not because it was fashionable. Given how close we already were, we only had to make some minor tweaks to get the Permatone product range approved. We really felt that it was an endorsement of our values to have an existing product approved by as highly respected an institution as the Soil Association of the UK. What are the key ecological and environmental benefits of Permatone products? Permatone inks are water-based, and are solvent-free, so there is no greenhouse gas contribution from this source. They do not contain phthalate or trimellitate plasticisers nor PVC resin, and are much safer for the printer and the person that eventually wears the garment. They do not give off VCM (vinyl chloride monomer) fumes while curing, nor leach plasticisers into the skin of the person wearing the garment, nor into washing water that results in David Stuart, managing director of Colormaker Industries, which manufactures the Soil Association- certified Permatone ink range, talks about the development of an organic-approved ink and how it benefits both the printer and the end user Setting the eco standard of our products. The inks are extremely durable. This supports slow fashion, rather than ‘wear it once and throw it out’, ie fast fashion. If you have gone to the effort of choosing organic fabrics or garments, then it makes sense to have them printed with an organic-certified ink such as Permatone water-based ink, resulting in a fully organic garment. Do Permatone inks offer any production benefits? On the production side, screens can be cleaned up with water, rather than The Permatone colour-matching set This baby bodysuit by Print Ink Studio in Melbourne, Australia, was printed using Permatone inks All Permatone inks are made using 100% renewable energy