soy ink sources

Hi Press People!

Anyone know where to buy soy inks?


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Just about anywhere that printing inks are sold.

Any search engine (Google, Yahoo) will find this stuff.

But why would you want them?


I’ve been unable to locate any soy ink via web searches or other avenues, such as artist supply (eg Blick, etc).

I’m specifically looking for soy because it is a renewable resource versus petroleum oil based inks. But do have some other recommendation?

Spinks Envirotech, Gans Soy-Plus. I’ve used both and like both. Soy-Plus has a lot of gloss.

Order Gans direct from the company. Spinks must be purchased through a distributor like Valley Litho or Presstek.

I think there is a lot of greenwashing associated with soy ink, though. It isn’t necessarily better for the environment.

Today most oil based inks contain soy derived oils, it is the reason that modern inks are so shiny. The real environmental problems with inks are the pigments, of which many are heavy metals. Soy inks came about during the gas shortages of the 1970s. The soy lobby put the scare into the ink companies, and they caved. It’s too bad, because the really good letterpress inks stopped being made, and we’re stuck with these thinly pigmented, shiny, runny inks that are great for four color process on coated stock, but not much else.

Paul is a good place to start. Even Rubber Base Plus is 20-30% soy or linseed oil.

Thanks for the comments. I am also wary of the “greenwashing” of products and supplies. I don’t think that any ink is “good” for the environment, but the production of it can be less impacting via the use of a renewable resource like soy. I will check into the suggested sources. Thanks again!