Lincolnshire Energy Awards
In early June, Forum’s Management Team attended the Annual Lincolnshire Energy Awards after being shortlisted for the Lincolnshire Green Award sponsored by Duncan and Toplis.
Since Forum Packaging was born back in 2011, there has been a huge focus on its positive interaction with the environment. As a responsible company, it recognises that the protection of the environment forms an integral part of its business objectives. Since Forum began, it has regularly assessed its impact on the environment and sought ways to improve how to monitor and implement improvement strategies. The company has invested hundreds of thousands of pounds in a drive to both reduce energy consumption and the creation of clean energy.
Our Environmental Developments
• Solar farm
Forum has invested £230,000 in the project to site over 900 panels at its base of operations in Horncastle. The 243kWp system, installed by locally-based Freewatt, generates enough power to cope with 25% of Forum’s overall power needs, saving the company £40,000 a year and saving nearly 100 tons of CO2 emissions a year. The project utilises cutting-edge technology allowing the system to stand-alone from the National Grid.
• Electric cars
The management team were determined to extend and develop its green credentials and decided to utilize the solar farm to help provide some of its transport energy needs.
As a result Forum has invested in two new Volvo hybrid cars which will be charged by the panels on site.
• Low energy lighting
Forum has installed low energy LED lighting in its print hall, offices and warehouse. Working with a local company, Balkan Lighting, Forum installed a system that would maintain previous lighting levels only where and when it was needed. The new system utilises an “on demand” lighting service in areas of the operation.
• New roof
Simple yet effective, Forum invested in a new roof on its conversion hall as one of the first moves post management buy-out. This reduced the requirement for extra heating during the winter months and improved the temperature during the summer months. The result has been a better temperature balanced working environment for our employees, improving welfare and also lower heating and cooling bills.
• ISO14001 standard
All the major environment projects fall under the umbrella of our ISO14001 environment standard that we hold here at Forum Packaging. The standard helps monitor, manage and improve every aspect of our environment impact. These credentials show our customers that we truly care about the environment. We have also just passed the new 2015 standard for ISO14001.
The management at Forum believe these steps are creating a legacy and level of sustainability for the business that is both attractive to our customers and lays down the foundations for another successful 25 years of manufacture.
Plans for the Future
Despite making great strides in its green credentials already, Forum has no plans to rest upon its laurels. In fact as an ISO14001 standard recognised business constant monitoring and updating work practices to improve environmental impact are now embedded in the culture.
Plans for the future include:
• UV lacquers – we are in the process of moving away from UV lacquers to a water based alternative. Water based lacquers are kinder to the environment.
• Complete the move, already well underway, to the conversion of our printing to low migration ink systems.
• We are working on a project to maximise the number of pallets on a load, which will reduce the number of loads per annum. This in turn will reduce the environmental impact of our delivery service.
Charles Walker, Editor at the Lincolnshire Echo welcomed everyone to the Awards saying, ‘Lincolnshire is a key area for the renewable energy sector and the industry is so important to the county’s economy. The event gives us the opportunity to celebrate the fantastic effort by local companies who are striving to reduce their impact on the environment. From innovative startups, to established firms that put environmental practices at the heart of their operations, Lincolnshire businesses are pushing the boundaries of what can be achieved in this arena’.
There were nine different award categories in total and Forum were shortlisted for the Lincolnshire Green Award along with four other companies. The category recognises those businesses or organisations who, although are not directly involved in the energy sector, is nevertheless able to demonstrate that it has a ‘green culture’ within its business.
" A close working relationship with our customers allows us to develop a strong understanding of their business needs, so that we deliver cost effective packaging solutions. We back this up with consistent investment in product development, plant and people, to foster mutually beneficial and valuable long term business relationships. "
Rob Massey - Director