September 30, 2014

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Treeless pioneer: Owner of stationery company takes eco-conscious focus with new products

Save a tree. Buy a book.
Jennifer Anderson, 37, of Avon Lake, says her books will help stop deforestation – that`s because the paper is made out of stone, not wood pulp.
“This is going to save the environment,” she said Thursday, running her hands over the cover of a children`s journal. “Someday we might not be using trees for paper at all. This could completely change everything.”
Anderson owns Coco Press, an international stationery company that operates out of a deceivingly small office on Lear Industrial
Parkway in Avon.
From there, she coordinates about 300 salespeople selling bookmarks, calendars, greeting cards and books to stores such as Barnes & Noble, Bloomingdale`s and TJ Maxx.
A 1989 graduate of Lake Ridge Academy in North Ridgeville, Anderson bought the company in June 2006 and moved it from Beachwood to Avon.
Since then, she said, Coco Press has been growing by 50 percent every month.
Now Anderson wants to take the business in a new, environmentally safe direction with the introduction of treeless paper.
The material looks exactly like regular paper, but it`s made from crushed calcium bicarbonate – the same mineral that makes well water hard.
Rock-based paper is biodegradable, more durable than conventional paper and is actually a little less expensive, Anderson said.
Anderson said treeless paper is also better than recycled paper because the recycling process – as good as it is – still creates chemical byproducts that end up in streams and rivers.
At first, she`ll use treeless paper to make journals and day planners, but eventually she wants to use it for paper plates, gift bags and grocery bags.
“Almost anything you can make out of regular paper, we can make out of this,” she said.
Contact Jason Hawk at 329-7148 or jhawk@chroniclet.com.