Office Depot promotes green procurement with new paper policy

Office Depot updated its paper purchasing policy for its retail supply chain, increasing its number of sustainable paper products. The policy promotes green procurements as it encompasses all paper bought or sold by Office Depot stores worldwide. The main focus is on paper used in bulk such as copy paper and marketing papers. It will also extend to paper-based office products and shipping packages.

The office supply and services provider announced that it worked with World Wildlife Fund (WWF), several Environmental Non-Governmental Organizations (ENGOs) and other paper suppliers over a 12 month period to give its 2004 paper policy a new makeover.

"It builds from Office Depot's leadership policy of the past but is now structured to allow better tracking of progress along a shades of green continuum," said Yalmaz Siddiqui, senior director of environmental strategy at Office Depot.

Named the Environmental Paper Procurement Policy, the new initiative might allow consumers to make informed purchasing decisions by letting them know how sustainable different types of paper are.

Office Depot said on its site that it will work with suppliers of recycled content products in its promotion of environmental stewardship, which include the facets of reducing pollution, contributing to forest management and conservation. The office supply company aims to distribute paper products that have an average of 30 percent post consumer waste content recycled fiber and alternative fiber.

Office Depot's sustainability efforts received praise from WWF as well as leaders from the forestry sector, including Kim Carstensen, director general of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).

"Office Depot's new purchasing policy sets an important precedent by recognizing the very real benefits unique to FSC and reflects a deep understanding of what it takes to protect forests for future generations," Carstensen said.

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