Thursday, July 22, 2010

CornCard USA ready for market

"It sounds corny to some, but the latest card en route to consumers’ wallets promises the same durability of traditional petroleum-based (PVC) cards without using up one of Earth’s most valuable and dwindling resources … oil." - Marisa Torrieri, SecureIDNews

Several large card manufacturers in the market have big plans for the rollout of a "new" alternative to PVC blanks. CornCard USA is the brand name for Arthur Blank Co's (ABCO) new corn-based card product. The product contains no PVC, and does not release toxins when burned or recycled.

Laminex currently offers several environmentally friendly alternatives to standard plain PVC card stock. Two alternatives that perform very well are the Bio-PVC (biodegradable plastic material) and the 100% recycled PVC card. Corn-based cards are perfect for pre-printed gift cards or for customers who only need to surface print with monochrome resins. Early versions of the corn-based cards preformed poorly on YMC dye sublimation printers, but later versions of the card are proving to be better ink substrates. That said, retransfer technology printers like the Zebra ZXP-8 are making that early finding into a nonissue. For more information on our card materials and printer products, please visit the Laminex website.

Corn-based cards are showing up every day in the gift card market. Although every customer is not asking for a suitable alternative to PVC, when a large "top 50" company finally does, the market will take notice. If environmental responsibility doesn't turn the tide, then oil prices may eventually drive a change. Currently, corn based card products cost roughly 10% more than PVC based offerings. If that gap shrinks to 2-5% we may have a real race on our hands.

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