Is DTG Printing Sustainable?

There are so many printing resources in the world, such as screen prinitng, sublimation printing and DTG Printing. The issue of where our garments come from is rarely asked and often taken for granted. The multibillion-dollar apparel sector has always been taken for granted in our generation because clothes are produced rapidly and at a low cost.

There is a growing need for textiles manufactured using environmentally friendly procedures that meet the environmental standards for the entire textile sector, paving the way for more sustainable apparel production. We need to reconsider our fast-fashion habits—we can’t keep making items that aren’t environmentally friendly.

Printing processes are a combination of mechanical and chemical systems that work together. DTG printing, while appearing to be a simple procedure, employs water-based biodegradable ink that is easy to clean with water.

It is superior to other types of ink because it is free of plastics such as polyvinyl chloride (PVC), which contain hazardous chemical additions and can evaporate into the atmosphere over time.

Declining Costs, Increasing Wastes

Every second, one garbage truck of textiles is wasted, according to the Ellen McArthur Foundation. With the statistics provided by the Copenhagen Fashion Summit, over 92 million tons of fashion trash is discarded in landfills each year.

The fashion and garment business is the second greatest water consumer, producing 20% of all effluent. According to the UN ECE, they also emit more greenhouse gases than air and ocean transportation combined.

A Forbes article from 2015 shows that texture industry is also the second-largest polluter in the world after oil, accounting for 10% of global carbon emissions. According to the same report, roughly 70 million oil barrels are utilized to make polyester fiber around the world.

screen prinintg waste

The Increasing Waste of Fast Fashion

screen prinintg waste

Globally, over 150 billion clothes are created each year, with each American disposing of about 70 pounds of clothing each year. Clothing takes more than 200 years to degrade due to the materials used.

As the lifecycle of the clothing we all have demonstrates, the ongoing yearning for something new leads to greater textile waste. It is also not new information about how businesses may generate demand through smart marketing methods, including how they can create new trends that customers frequently follow.

According to the University of Queensland in Australia, people consume roughly 80 billion new pieces of apparel each year. This is 400% more than the world’s textile consumption two decades ago.

Clothing has become ‘disposable,’ owing to busy lifestyles, the loss of sewing and mending abilities over time, and a lack of incentive to fix worn-out garments.

Is Direct-to-Garment printing sustainable?

Textile dyeing is the world’s second-largest polluter of freshwater. And its waste is an unexpected consequence of rapid fashion, especially since that consumers are changing their outfits more frequently to keep up with the latest trend.

However, not all new technology has negative environmental consequences. DTG, or Direct-to-Garment printing, is a more environmentally friendly way of digitally printing an image into cotton textiles.

While the DTG printing method produces the same type of output, it uses more environmentally friendly ingredients, allowing for a change to more sustainable procedures. Here are three reasons why DTG printing is a viable long-term option.

Reason One: It uses water-based ink

Printing processes are a combination of mechanical and chemical systems that work together. DTG printing, while appearing to be a simple procedure, employs water-based biodegradable ink that is easy to clean with water. It is superior to other types of ink because it is free of plastics such as polyvinyl chloride (PVC), which contain hazardous chemical additions and can evaporate into the atmosphere over time.

Reason two: It uses less water

DTG printing adopts inkjet technology and uses less water than screen printing because it uses a printer that directly transfers the ink to the shirts. Screen printing, on the other hand, involves some cleaning on both the person doing the printing and the screens and other materials utilized. Unlike other plastisol-based printers, it creates less waste and water due to direct inkjet printing. Because of the potentially dangerous wastes it produces, this oil-based ink requires a variety of chemicals to clean up and is not as sustainable and eco-friendly.

Reason three: DTG produces are consistent

There are few identical things in life, but when it comes to making clothes with similar top-notch quality, they are almost always created the same way. While screen printing is consistent, it has a higher probability of not producing similar prints because it is done by hand. Its procedure has a lot of variables, all of which result in different print results. DTG printer creates consistent prints without having to worry about other variables because it uses a digital file and prints directly from the computer.

What Should We Do to Become More Sustainable?

  1. Educate yourself and conduct research on environmentally friendly materials.
    Learning more about sustainable practices is important, especially if you want to buy less but better. One novel approach is to keep a capsule wardrobe, which consists of a small number of garments and accessories that may be worn on any given day. For people who are accustomed to having larger wardrobes, this may appear to be a difficult chore, but it does not imply that you must discard all of your clothes and replace them with new ones from sustainable labels all at once. That would just result in greater waste.
  2. Repurpose or recycle your old clothes.
    This is incredibly simple to achieve using DTG printing. Anyone may do it at home thanks to the high-speed and efficient technology employed in this printing method. Old cotton shirts might be simply replaced with new prints, marking the start of your zero-waste fashion journey.
  3. Prioritize quality over quantity.
    Normal clothing is easy to spot, especially today that there are so many brands producing high-quality apparel. While some may appear to be more expensive, keep in mind that they will most likely last longer.

Here You Can Chek Some Applications of DTG

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