2021 Accountability: Recycled Paper and Charitable Giving
It’s that time of year again! We’re looking back at 2021 and taking a moment to reflect on the impact our business has on those around us, what we’re doing to help create a better world, and the ways in which we might improve in the future.
We believe that ethical conduct is not only compatible with sound business practices but also an essential obligation for companies such as ours. Our commitment to ethical conduct carries through to all aspects of our operations, from the selection of books that we publish to the choice of paper on which we print those books. We aim to always extend fair treatment to our authors, our staff, our freelancers, our suppliers, the professors who adopt our books, and the students who purchase and read our books. We also aim to minimize our environmental impact, and try to give something back to the communities in which we operate.
Our use of recycled and FSC-certified paper is an aspect of ethical business practices that we are able to track quantitatively. For many years now, nearly all Broadview books with paper weights of 40lbs or greater (what is considered the “standard” paper-weight range for books) have been printed on FSC certified and at least partially recycled paper, with the majority of these being printed on 100% recycled paper.
As the figures below show, however, while the number of individual titles (including both new titles and reprints) printed on 100% recycled and FSC-certified paper is fairly high, ranging from 77-80% annually, the number of pages printed on 100% recycled and FSC-certified paper is much lower, ranging from 45 54% of all pages printed.
The barrier we’ve come up against is that longer books such as the Broadview Anthology of British Literature, The Broadview Introduction to Literature, and The Broadview Anthology of Social and Political Thought, which have high page counts and are often printed in large quantities, must use very thin paper in order to remain reasonably light and portable. There is very low demand for recycled or FSC-certified paper that is also thin, and to our knowledge it is not available from any Canadian printers. Given this availability problem, it does not seem likely that we will be able to increase the percentage of Broadview pages printed on recycled and FSC-certified paper in the near future, though we remain committed to seeking these options wherever possible.
In 2021 we printed or reprinted many anthologies on thin paper and this led to a decrease in the percentage of pages printed on FSC and recycled paper as a proportion of all pages printed.
Broadview is committed to the principle of reparations (You can read our full statement on racial discrimination and reparations on our blog.); as a tangible acknowledgement of that principle, we began in 2020 to assign 1% of our annual after-tax profits to charities focused on improving educational and other opportunities for disadvantaged Black and Indigenous students.
The recipients of these funds in relation to our performance in 2021 were: the Shannen’s Dream campaign run by the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada; the The Black Business and Professional Association National Scholarship Program (BBPA-NSP); and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund.
Broadview Press has given 2% of its 2021 net profits to charity. The first 1% was given to the organizations noted above. We have also made donations to the following charities: Feed Ontario, Food Banks BC, Feed Nova Scotia, The Calgary Food Bank, the Against Malaria Foundation, and
the Thomas H.B. Symons Memorial Fund at Trent University.
Additionally, we donate a portion of revenue from several titles to charity, including giving a royalty on The Ethics of Pandemics and Concepts and Cases in Nursing Ethics 4e to Doctors Without Borders to assist in the fight against COVID-19, and a royalty on sales of books highlighting topics of racial justice to organizations that include the Equal Justice Initiative, Color of Change, Black Lives Matter, and The Movement for Black Lives.