ABOUT SHIRT MAGIC / ALTA HEMP
AND WHY WE WILL NOT USE PLASTISOL INK
Shirt Magic is located in Lewiston California, a small town in beautiful Trinity County. We have been in business since 1997 and sell both retail and wholesale at trade shows, fairs, and on the net.
We are an eco-friendly company. We believe that a company needs to be aware of the environment and strive to live in harmony with nature.
We print on organic cotton or hemp blend T-shirts with non-toxic water base inks; not the usual plastisol based inks used by most screen printers. Our prints are soft to touch and breathe well.
Plastisol ink is a liquefied (PVC) polyvinyl chloride. PVC is by far the most environmentally damaging plastic. The PVC life cycle -- its production, use, and disposal -- results in the release of toxic, chlorine-based chemicals. The chlorine reacts with other chemicals to form unwanted by-products like dioxin, PCBs, hexachlorobenzene, acidic gases, and others. These toxins are building up in the water, air and food chain.
PVC is produced from imported, non-renewable fossil fuels and lethal chlorine gas. Its production involves transportation of dangerous poisonous explosive materials and the creation of toxic waste. The plasticizers used in plastisol ink to make the PVC flexible are carcinogenic and harmful to the environment, particularly when they evaporate or leach into food. They are released into the environment during the printing and curing of the plastisol ink and they will continue to exhaust toxins when exposed to a radiant heat source such as a house hold dryer or even sunlight.
If landfilled, PVC eventually releases its additives, threatening ground water. Fires and incinerators cause the release of PVC's toxic chemicals such as dioxin. PVC production is the largest single use of chlorine in the U.S. For more information on PVC and why it is such a danger see our links page.
We do not use any petroleum based solvents in our water base screen printing business. They endanger the air we breathe, our bodies, our water supply, and the earth's ozone layer.
We choose to print on organic cotton and hemp products. Regular cotton takes up to three times its weight in pesticides to produce. Close to 40% of all the world's pesticides are sprayed on cotton. Organic cotton is grown and processed with out chemical fertilizers and pesticides.
Hemp is the strongest natural fiber in the world. It is grown in most cases with out pesticides. See our hemp info page for more information.
We continue to be amazed by the number of so-called environmental based organizations and companies that still print on non-organic cotton and with plastisol based inks.
All images are either used with permission or copyright by Shirt Magic.