Chalk-based substrate is alternative to PVC for gift, loyalty, membership & commercial cards
Thames Card Technology has signed an exclusive deal with Nu: Agencies, part of the Nuco International group, to bring its environmentally-friendly card material to the UK. Nu: eCard is a ‘green’ alternative to PVC, combining chalk with low levels of high-density polyethylene to create a card with performance and costs to rival traditional plastics, without the environmental impact.
Thames Card Technology is the only card producer in the UK able to use the Nu: eCard material, which has already been used to manufacture tens of millions of cards in the U.S. Thames will also offer the material to customers in mainland Europe.
The first credible alternative to PVC
“We have been looking for a credible PVC alternative for a number of years, but there has always been a catch,” comments Paul Underwood, Managing Director of Thames Card Technology. “Either costs were much higher or the performance of the card was not up to scratch. Nu: eCard has changed the game with a material that is green without compromises. We’ve done extensive testing on the material to ISO7810 standard and are extremely excited about the possibilities it opens up for ecologically minded companies, without increasing costs.”
Nu: eCard is made from sustainable, reclaimed and renewable materials, and polyethylene has a low ecological impact. The low-energy, low CO2 production process does not require water, acid, alkaline or bleach, which has resulted in a Cradle to Cradle Environmental Certification award.
Answering existing demand for greener cards
“PVC has been at the centre of card manufacture for years and change is not brought about easily,” adds Ian Brown, Director of Nu: Agencies. “We therefore took our time to develop and test Nu: eCard before setting about finding the right partner to bring it to the UK. The decision to work with Thames was an easy one. They’re committed to innovation and have great awareness of the companies that are already crying out for more card manufacture options. We have experienced huge success in the U.S. and have no doubt that we will receive the same demand in the UK and Europe with Thames as our partner.”
“This partnership with Thames Card Technology is further confirmation that our decision to invest in developing Nu: eCard was the right one,” adds Keith Matthews, Managing Director of Nuco International Ltd. “This product is gaining global momentum through our partners both sides of the Atlantic and it won’t be long now until consumers across Europe also have greener cards in their pockets.”
Cards produced using Nu: eCard look and feel virtually identical to other 100% plastic cards and can be manufactured using exactly the same machinery. The cards are already in use for gift, loyalty, membership, marketing and hotel key cards, amongst a range of other uses.