COLUMBUS, Ohio -- President E. Gordon Gee will help kick off The Ohio State University's new "Soy Toner Alliance," in which laser printers on campus will begin using a new soy-based toner originally developed in a collaboration between the Ohio Soybean Council and Battelle.

The event is scheduled for 9 a.m. on Tuesday, June 22, at the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, 2201 Fred Taylor Dr.

The toner, produced by Mitsubishi and available in AgriTone replacement cartridges produced by West Point Products, is 35-percent or more bio-based. The development of the toner was funded by soybean checkoff dollars provided to Battelle from the Ohio Soybean Council.

Other speakers at the event will be Bobby Moser, vice president and dean of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences; Keith Kemp, chairman of the Ohio Soybean Council and Preble County soybean farmer; Debby Parks, director of UniPrint; and representatives from Battelle.

Ohio State's adoption of soy-based toner makes it one of the largest users of soy-based toner in the nation.

The benefits of soy-based toner are multiple:

  • Soybean oil, a renewable resource, is a key ingredient in the new toner and replaces petroleum, which is used in traditional toner.
  • Soy-based toner is easier to remove from paper during recycling than traditional toner, streamlining the recycling process.
  • Use of soy-based toner provides a new market for Ohio farmers, who grow soybeans on more than 4 million acres each year.

Soy-based toner falls right in line with the spirit of Ohio's new BioPreferred Purchasing program, passed with strong bipartisan support in the Ohio legislature and signed by Gov. Ted Strickland in February. The program calls for state agencies, departments and state-supported colleges and universities to purchase bio-based alternatives as often as possible.

Ohio State's new "Soy Toner Alliance" is led by UniPrint, which maintains about half of the estimated 7,000 printers on campus. UniPrint will be using soy-based toner in any printer in its program for which cartridges are available, currently totaling about 700. Those printers print about 800,000 pages per month.

Ohio State's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences helped pilot use of the new toner when UniPrint began using it on June 1.

SOURCE: Ohio State.