Giving Back 2020

We are proud to be a company that gives back to our community. This year, we are holding our first annual food drive.

We have been fortunate for the past eight months in that all our employees have been able to keep working and to keep receiving a paycheck when there are millions of people out there who are out of work and waiting in food lines. Our employees are participating by bringing in non-perishable food items or cash donations. Our collection will be given to Two Rivers Head Start Agency serving all of Kane County. #givingback

Donations from our Employees

Donations from our Employees

Donations from our Employees

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Printing Technology: VOC Reduction Drives the Market

Printing Technology: VOC Reduction Drives the Market

Printing inks are evolving – and taking the printing world with them. Beyond the equipment advancements of the last decade, the new or improved technologies within materials, inks, and solvents have mirrored heightened necessity and drive for ethical practice. 

Sustainability Reigns

Sustainability matters to consumers, and the printing industry is no exception. A transition to sustainable practices is predicted to be one of the most influential driving forces for the next five years, based on the work already being done to reduce the environmental impact of printing. Notably, a reduction in volatile organic compounds, or VOC’s, aid in reducing greenhouse gases. 

A key development within ink production are two sustainability-friendly options: vegetable-based and water-based printing inks. Environmentally-friendly, vegetable-based inks are commonly composed of oils like soy, linseed, canola, or safflower, and carry many advantages over petroleum-based inks. Water-based inks are primarily water and pigment. While drying times for both of these ink types are longer than other inks (i.e. petroleum or solvent-based), vegetable or water-based inks drastically reduce the amount of VOCs, releasing approximately 2-4% VOC emissions for vegetable-based ink, and even better, <1% for water-based inks.

Improving ink processes has a positive trickle down effect on washing processes, too. When presses operating with petroleum inks are washed, additional VOCs are released – furthering their negative impact. Presses operating with vegetable inks not only release fewer VOCs, but they can be fully cleaned with less water and fewer solvents.

Sustainability in printing is advancing by leaps and bounds, matching consumer values and ensuring a brighter future for the industry as a whole.

Learn more about Sustainability at Continental Envelope.

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Continental Envelope Celebrates 84 Years!

Continental Envelope Celebrates 84 Years!

We’re celebrating! November 21st marks Continental Envelope’s 84th anniversary, and we couldn’t be more excited with where we’re headed. But first, let’s take a look at where we’ve been.


Click here to view our 84th Anniversary Timeline in full screen!

Learn more about us.

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2020: A Page-turner for Paper

2020: A Page-turner for Paper

In the years to come, when people think about 2020 and paper, they will likely remember toilet paper shortages – in reality, however, many paper industry segments have had a wild ride this year in terms of demand.

The paper industry as a whole was expected to see stable demand for the first half of 2020, followed by a period of accelerated growth toward 2021. When toilet paper, paper towels, and other household paper products disappeared from shelves as consumers stockpiled stay-at-home essentials, paper packaging demand also skyrocketed as reliance on eCommerce and it’s supply chain increased.

Even within these general paper segments, disruption varied categorically (paper packaging, tissue, pulp, recovered paper, graphic paper, nonwovens). Take tissue, for example. While tissue products sold within consumer grocery segments experienced healthy growth as a result of end-user demand – a severe lack in demand in other tissue segments, such as hospitality, caused significant deficits. 

Another category heavily affected by a decrease in “Away-from-Home” demand was graphic paper. With work-from-home shutting down offices and e-learning closing schools and universities, printers went cold from nonuse. The need for paper products in the workplace or educational setting lessened, and social distancing measures furthered decreased the need for graphic paper as it was used for print advertising. 

Though the paper demand disruption of this year remains apparent, leading forecasts predict 2021 will lean toward demand recovery and stabilization, rather than additional turbulence. Sourcing, supply chain, and logistics, while stressed over the last several months, have adjusted to the current paper demand environment. Where mills have been operating at capacity, many have adjusted to the increased demand across the board, thus eliminating much of the production shortfalls experienced earlier this year.

At Continental Envelope, we are strive to limit our impact on natural resources. Learn more about how we source responsibly and maximize recyclability here.

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Pushing Safety + Sustainability: Packaging for 2021

Pushing Safety + Sustainability: Packaging for 2021

Pushing Safety + Sustainability: Packaging for 2021

Direct mail, the original “contactless delivery” method, continues to lead key communication efforts while in-person meetings remain stagnant, if even an option, across many industry sectors. Without a doubt, digital marketing is filling a significant portion of sales outreach, but physical mail – with samples and the tactile connection it generates, remains popular for B2B and B2C lead generation.

Perhaps not surprisingly, sustainability and safety top the list of key consumer concerns with packaging as we head into the end-of-year holiday mailing crunch.


Sustainability is not a new trend for consumers across any industry, but mindfulness of it is at an all time high. Takeout containers at home have replaced dinnerware at restaurants; delivery packages have replaced items placed in shopping bags as eCommerce has supplemented necessity and grocery shopping. In addition to improved design to eliminate unnecessary packaging, consumers are increasingly mindful of the materials used, and how recyclable those materials are in terms of reducing refuse impact on the environment.


In terms of safety in packaging, this year has provided an opportunity for companies to rethink their approach to secure packaging. Perhaps most significantly, for example, envelopes, bags and packages secured with tamper-proof adhesive strips are quickly gaining traction as “must haves” for limiting recipients’ exposure to unknown contaminants.

At a time where receiving mail, packages, and takeout is viewed as a method of protecting your health, consumers and businesses are looking for packaging solutions which provide secure, environmentally-friendly options.

Learn about Continental Envelope’s commitment to Sustainability here.

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Direct Mail Delivers in 2020

Direct Mail Delivers in 2020

Despite a drastic increase in digital marketing, direct mail has been an essential piece of the 2020 marketing puzzle, matching both B2C and B2B demands. Here’s what’s been trending:

  • According to a report by the CMO Council on the Trends and Future of Direct Mail through 2020, 71.4% of North America’s Direct Mail volume in 2020 is within B2C – a 3.5% increase from 2015.
  • During the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Postal Service ranked #1 on The Harris Poll Essential 100, due to the power of direct mail during a period of such uncertainty. UPS ranked #4, followed by FedEx at #9.
  • Top mailers of 2020 include direct-to-consumer businesses, specifically within grocery and beverage delivery, home goods, entertainment and streaming services, health and wellness, and pet products. Close behind these businesses are home protection companies, financial products and services, mortgage, banking, and debt relief, and insurance.

During a time when staying connected is more vital – and difficult – than ever, direct mail delivers a dependable, proven way to provide information to customers.

Learn more about how our capabilities help you achieve your goals here.

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Continental Envelope Wins Four (4) 2020 Excellence in Flexography Awards

Continental Envelope wins four 2020 Excellence in Flexography Awards sponsored by the Flexographic Technical Association.

Gold – Envelope, Line, Uncoated Paper

Gold – Envelope Screen, Uncoated Paper

Silver – Envelope, Screen, Uncoated Paper

Silver – Envelope, Screen, Coated Paper

CE Congrats on Award

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response

With health and safety our highest priority, we want to share important information about the coronavirus, or COVID-19, outbreak.

MONITORING: Continental Envelope’s management team is meeting regularly to determine the appropriate proactive measures to mitigate this evolving public health threat. Our recommendations are being made in accordance with guidelines from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and local and state public health agencies.

ZERO CONFIRMED CORONAVIRUS CASES: As of this writing, there are no reported cases of COVID-19 among our employees. However, this is a rapidly evolving situation with new high-risk areas emerging almost daily. Therefore, it is critical that everyone take personal responsibility to closely follow the recommended precautionary measures outlined below.

TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS: In order to limit exposure or risk of being unable to return home due to sudden mandatory quarantines imposed by local agencies, Continental Envelope has imposed business travel restrictions.

VISITORS: To reduce the risk of the virus being brought into our facilities, we will not allow visitors without an appointment and then only if the appointment is essential.

SAFEGUARDING OF OUR PRODUCTS: The primary components used in the manufacturing of our envelopes are sourced in the United States.  We have surveyed our suppliers and, at this time, not one of them is aware of any imminent production issues related to COVID-19.

AVOID PANIC AND RUMOR: We realize fear and anxiety can be heightened during situations like this, and we want to be sure to separate fact from rumor by relying on healthcare experts and appropriate agencies responsible for guiding us.

Now more than ever, we are grateful for the opportunity to serve you.  Continental Envelope is committed to providing you the support you may need during this time.  Thank you for your business, trust and patience.  We will continue to closely monitor the situation and react quickly.  As always, if you have any questions or need support, please contact me directly.

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Not all window envelopes are the same.

The USPS has assessed a company $89,000 in additional postage for the failure of the windows on their envelopes. The 1.7 million piece job was entered into the postal stream and during processing windows began to fail for various reasons. Upon further investigation it was discovered the windows were made with inferior polypropylene rather than polystyrene. The polypropylene material is thinner, less durable, and can be prone the hazing in the window rendering the barcode difficult to scan. Make sure you ask your envelope vendors about window material.

See below images of window envelopes made with polypropylene.


Please view the article at

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Continental Envelope named finalist for Valley Industrial Association SPARK Awards.

January 31, 2020.  Continental Envelope has been named a finalist for the Valley Industrial Association’s annual Spark awards.  We are thrilled to be included in such a terrific and diverse group of companies.  Please visit the VIA Facebook and LinkedIn pages as they highlight each company that is a finalist over the next two weeks.




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