28 November 2013
'Wheat straw' stock takes first steps in Canada
TORONTO—Corporate Knights is the first magazine in North America to print on a paper made mostly from wheat straw, leftover agricultural waste usually burned on fields after harvest.

"Recycled paper is great, but we don't think that recycled paper is going to fill the demand for paper in general," said Tyler Hamilton, editor-in-chief of the corporate sustainability magazine. "We're in support of alternative fibres that can bridge that gap and help complement the availability of recycled fibre, and in effect take pressure off our forests."


The November issue of Corporate Knights

The stock, called Step Forward Paper Professional Grade, is made by Manitoba-based Prairie Paper Ventures, and is a larger-format publication version of a commercial product the company introduced in 2012. One of Prairie Paper's founders, actor and activist Woody Harrelson, covers the issue.

The paper is imported from a mill in India, but Prairie Paper's long-term plans include building a straw paper mill in Manitoba. North American printers now offering Step Forward Paper Professional Grade include EarthColor in New Jersey (which printed the 60%-wheat-straw issue of Corporate Knights); MPH Graphics in Markham, Ont.; Burnaby B.C.-based Hemlock; and Plan it Green Printing in Los Angeles.

According to environmentalist group Canopy, straw papers have half the ecological footprint of tree papers, and can potentially save 180 million trees annually.

Other publications that have used straw-based paper include a limited edition of Alice Munro’s Dear Life, Yann Martel’s Life of Pi, Margaret Atwood’s In Other Worlds, and an issue of Canadian Geographic which used 20% wheat-straw stock.
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