SOURCE: Mohawk Fine Papers, Inc.

Mohawk Fine Papers, Inc.

April 09, 2009 13:18 ET

Mohawk Fine Papers Helps Close the Loop for In-Store Earth Month Materials at Whole Foods Market®

COHOES, NY--(Marketwire - April 9, 2009) - Mohawk Fine Papers, Inc. helped Whole Foods Market become the first national retailer to produce all of its national in-store Earth Month materials using "third generation" closed-loop recycled papers.

"Closed-loop" means that Whole Foods Market has recycled and reused its own paper for zero waste. The Company took its own paper waste and had it de-inked and recycled into paper pulp. The pulp was then sent to Mohawk to be manufactured into new paper for the production of its Earth Month materials. Typically, Whole Foods Market immediately recycles its in-store materials as soon as they become outdated; however, for this program the company saved and stored all outdated materials with the purpose of creating enough volume to manufacture new paper for itself.

The term "third-generation" means that the same fibers have been used to manufacture paper three separate times. Essentially, the paper's "life" began as virgin fiber paper, which was used and then recycled. Mohawk took the recycled fiber and manufactured it as 100% postconsumer waste paper, which was used by Whole Foods Market, then once again recycled and re-manufactured by Mohawk into 100% postconsumer waste paper.

The papers that Whole Foods Market used and ultimately recycled were Mohawk Via 100% PC Cool White and Mohawk Options 100% PC White. Because Mohawk's 100% postconsumer waste papers are all FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified, and because Whole Foods Market used Mohawk to remanufacture the paper, together the two companies were able to ensure the integrity of the environmental properties of the paper along with any third-party environmental certifications. This is unusual for third-generation papers since much of the recycled pulp is exported from the U.S. for manufacturing. Whole Foods Market's closed-loop program was an entirely domestic endeavor.

According to Mohawk's Environmental Calculator, Whole Foods Market created a significant environmental savings by using closed-loop papers. 20,000 pounds of third-generation 100% postconsumer waste paper were used for the Earth Month materials, creating an environmental savings equal to:

192 trees preserved for future use
554.42 pounds of waterborne waste not created
81,557 gallons of wastewater flow saved
9,024 pounds of solid waste not generated
17,768 pounds of greenhouse gases prevented
136,000,000 BTUs energy not consumed

Because Mohawk manufactured the paper with wind-generated electricity, an additional impact was created: 9,232 pounds of air emissions were not generated (which means that 4 barrels of crude oil were not used) and the savings was equal to not driving 10,000 miles or planting 624 trees.

Rene Harbison of Studio Azul, Inc. is a print production consultant who acted as vendor liaison for the program. "Mohawk and Whole Foods Market have similar environmental stories and visions. Mohawk went above and beyond to help create the opportunity for Whole Foods Market to be the first national retail company to implement a closed-loop recycling program and draw further awareness of the global need to recycle," says Harbison.

More information about Whole Foods Market and its closed-loop Earth Month program can be found at

For more information about Mohawk's extensive collection of 100% recycled papers, visit or call 1-800 the mill.

Contact Information

  • Client Contact:
    Jane Monast
    Mohawk Fine Papers
    Email Contact

    Agency Contact:
    Pam Williams
    Williams and House
    Email Contact