Business services Mar, 31 2010

Cartridge refilling: route to a greener world

With global warming proving to be a continuous threat to the environment, many companies are turning green. Re-feel, a cartridge refilling company through franchising is spreading the message of go green across the country. Read on

By Abha Garyali
Sub Editor
Cartridge refilling: route to a greener world

Due to the changing environmental conditions, conservation of nature has become a major challenge in today’s scenario. The rise in temperature or melting glaciers caused due to global warming is a matter of concern among individuals across different sections of the society. Re-feel for example, has taken the threat of global warming seriously and is striving to create a safer and healthier environment. Re-feel, a cartridge refilling company is on a mission to save the environment from pollution caused due to used cartridges.

Detrimental effects of cartridges

The basic idea behind biodegradable computer cartridge has an added edge in today’s scenario. In today’s context, e-waste is the fastest growing component of the municipal solid waste stream because people are replacing their mobile phones, computers, televisions, audio equipment, and printers more frequently than ever before. Mobile phones and computers are causing the biggest threat to the environment.

In Europe, e-waste is increasing at three to five per cent a year, almost three times more than the total e-waste stream. Developing countries like India are also expected to triple their e-waste production over the next five years. In such a scenario, the importance of cartridge refilling is felt even more profoundly.

Moreover, toner dust contains hazardous materials and inkjet cartridges contain chemicals that can harm the environment. Hence, when the cartridges are disposed off in landfill over time, these chemicals can leach into the groundwater and pollute the environment. The plastics and metals used in manufacturing cartridges come from non-renewable resources. When disposed off, they take many years to deteriorate and thus put increased pressure on our valuable resources.

Significance of refilled cartridges

In the last few years, a tremendous growth has been witnessed in computer cartridge industry. With computers becoming the lifeline of the corporate sector in the 21st century, the usage of cartridges has also increased. The industry of refilling and recycling of printer cartridges has been estimated at over Rs 2,500 crore per annum. A growth of 20 per cent has been estimated in this field every year. Even by selling refilled cartridges 50 to 70 per cent less than the price of original cartridges, the companies can make generous profit margin.

However, there was a time when ink cartridges could not be refilled and had to be replaced with new ones when they dried up. Printer manufacturers used to make money more on the cartridges than on the printers themselves. Therefore, these manufacturers were not inclined to refill used cartridges. But now with the changed times, there are companies that provide remanufactured cartridges that not only have the compatibility with the original product but are also available at three-fourth the price.

Re-feel’s role in reducing environmental threat

Re-feel, a cartridge refilling company has taken into consideration the detrimental effect of cartridges on the environment. Re-feel saves cartridges from being thrown into the landfill and through recycling and refilling, enables the consumers to get a print quality and page count like the original printer cartridge.

The concept of Re-feel started in 2007 with its head office in Kolkata. Seeing the popularity of this concept, the company took the franchise route to expand pan India. Presently, this company has caught the imagination of people with over 100 franchises stores in 75 locations all across the country. Re-feel helps consumers save heavily and at the same time ensure that a considerable profit margin be kept aside for the franchisees.

Re-feel since its inception, has refilled more than over four lakh cartridges and thereby saved many cartridges from going to the landfills. Making a new cartridge requires 3.4 litres of oil, hence in just 12 months, recycling of cartridges could save 4.3 million litres of oil in a country of 22 million people. When a cartridge is thrown away it takes more than 450 years to biodegrade. Therefore, service is done to the environment by refilling and recycling cartridges.  
At Re-feel, ink and toner printer cartridges are refilled so that they can be used again and again. Moreover, the company has high quality toner and ink. Hence, the remanufactured cartridges contain high-quality components that give excellent printing results.

More than five million companies around the world already rely on cartridges for their day-to-day printing needs as well as for their most important projects. In such a market scenario, prospect for Re-feel is immense as printer cartridge is a consumable product. Marketing experts predict that re-using one’s business products in a way truly leverage large growth. Re-feel excels in this respect as it has developed a tradition of meeting customer satisfaction with its quality and dedicated services.

To conclude it can be said that like Re-feel, if other companies also take on the mission to save the environment from pollution caused due to their products, the threat of global warming can be considerably reduced.

Related: Fulfilling biz dreams by refilling cartridges

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