Environmentally friendly print

In summer of 2014 we joined a carbon capture scheme in association with one of our paper merchants and The Woodland Trust. We have just been notified that we have created 517.11m2 of new native woodland in the UK and removed 20,685kg of Carbon Dioxide. We did not manage this time to visit the woodland site to help plant the trees but we hope to in the future. Kopykat strives to be a printer who respects the environment we achieved Green Mark Accreditation in 2008 and currently hold FSC Chain of Custody. We can show the FSC logo on items of print on behalf of a client to show their environmental commitment. FSC chain of Custody shows the journey of the paper from a well managed forest to the end user. It was initially developed for the furniture industry to try and stop illegal logging.

Print trends

When talking to other members of the print community there appears to be a swing back towards print for marketing material over email type marketing. Print volumes may not return to the level of a few years ago although occasional volume jobs are still in demand from time to time. Print is now being spoken of as a luxury item albeit in smaller quantities using textured papers, gold foils and embossing and finishes such as soft touch lamination. The printed result stays in the mind of the target market much more than an email which can easily be deleted at the press of a button.

At a recent seminar held by Two sides and Print Power research from Kantar Media showed that contrary to popular belief media readership had increased by 6%. The research also stated that readers have a greater trust in printed media over digital and that people spent 90% more time reading printed newspapers than online. So take a break grab a cup of coffee and enjoy a good read of a beautifully printed magazine!

VAT and print

Many clients find it confusing regarding the VAT rules with regard some printed items and it certainly can be complicated. So let me try and explain.

Most printing is classified by HMRC as standard rated in effect you must pay VAT on the printed item. So stationery items such as letterheads, compliment slips and business cards carry VAT along with invitations, posters, pocket folders, tickets, greetings cards and postcards.

You will be pleased to know that there are exceptions to the rule. Nearly all booklets, brochures and leaflets are zero rated so you do not pay vat this can be particularly helpful to organisations or individuals who cannot reclaim VAT. If your leaflet contains a 10% off with this leaflet type offer or free entry to an event then it should carry VAT as it can be thought of as a ticket. Leaflets that do not carry VAT should be meant to be read a few times and thrown away. Instruction leaflets are zero rated as it generally accompanies some other service or product.

Finally just to confuse us all even further a leaflet that is encapsulated or laminated is standard rated as the HMRC deems that it is intended to be kept by the recipient. Another pointer from the HMRC is that if thick card is used they believe it has been designed to be retained so again could carry VAT. 

Some printers add VAT to everything then they cannot go wrong but we try to apply it on a job by job basis if you are unsure we will always try to guide you when you are ready to place an order.

Colour posters

We are finding that more and more companies and individuals are making enquiries about posters. Posters are now being ordered for weddings, birthday celebrations as one offs because it is surprisingly inexpensive.

Generally the most popular sizes are A2 and A1. Most posters for smaller quantities are printed digitally as it is cost effective and has a speedy turnaround time. We can for example often have a client walk through the door who needs a poster almost immediately, it is entirely possible to print within a couple of hours as we have three large format machines available for this type of request.

We have recently installed a mounting machine to enable us to offer a quick turnaround for exhibition type boards. So your poster will be printed on 190gsm silk paper then applied to a 5mm thick board ready for display.

What happens though if your poster request runs into larger multiples? at Kopykat we also have offset print machines so if for instance you need 50 or 100 A2 posters we might suggest offset printing as it is often more cost effective to produce the posters this way than on a slower large format machine. This only works if it is a common content throughout. 

So if you are a best man preparing a speech at your mate's wedding why not accompany it with an embarrassing childhood picture of the groom! All you need to do is supply a print ready PDF.

New York, New York

We received an order earlier in the week from a technology company based in New York. This involved an 8pp brochure, A4 product sheets and business cards. They sent the artwork over and we processed the order which all went very smoothly. They are due to fly in and stay in the Shoreditch area and exhibit at Excel where we will deliver to on Sunday. Almost immediately after we took the order we received another enquiry from New York. It just shows the power of Google and how the print world has changed with orders arriving from all sorts of different locations. Maybe we should open Kopykat NYC!