HP: Clone Toner Cartridges are Hazardous to Users’ Health, Environment

Back in November 2017 (see here), HP Inc. published findings that it says show clone or compatible toner cartridges (toner cartridges that are marketed as alternatives to HP original toner cartridges) are a bad deal for customers. More recently, it’s published a document that it says shows clone cartridges are also bad for for users’ health and safety  – and for the environment.

The document notes that testing performed by a German laboratory has shown that clone toner cartridges failed Blue Angel and EPEAT standards for indoor air quality. That is, they emit up to 60 percent over the allowed health and safety limit of particles emitted in the air when printing. Additionally:

  • Up to 130-percent of the tested clone toner cartridge emitted volatile organic compounds (VOCs) over health and safety limits.
  • Up to 53 percent of the tested clone toner cartridges were over the allowed health and safety limits for styrene.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): “Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are emitted as gases from certain solids or liquids. VOCs include a variety of chemicals, some of which may have short- and long-term adverse health effects.”

Styrene is said to be a Styrene a “known carcinogen,” especially in case of eye contact, but also in cases of skin contact, ingestion, and inhalation, according to several sources such as Ullmann’s Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry.

Tested HP toner cartridges, however, were below all limits:

Environmental Concerns

HP also argues that clone cartridges aren’t eco-friendly – that testing has shown they produce inconsistent print quality, so that users have to print more pages, and that they consume more energy in their production and transportation, resulting in a 55-percent larger carbon footprint than HP toner cartridges.

HP  notes that while it was named one of the world’s most sustainable corporations in 2017, and recycles customer’s depleted toner cartridges, most clone manufacturers don’t have sustainability programs or the ability to recycle their depleted clone toner cartridges, so that depleted toner cartridges end up in landfills. In fact, it says that, according to research conducted by market-research firm InfoTrends, “almost all clone cartridges end up in a landfill …nearly 90% of the toner cartridges sold by the clone manufacturers surveyed will ultimately be thrown away because most fail to collect their own products.”

In contrast, HP says its “makes it free and easy to recycle your used cartridges through the HP Planet Partners program, available in more than 60 countries and territories worldwide, so that depleted HP toner cartridges never have to end up in a landfill.”

Visit HP here to see the complete document.

More Resources

%d bloggers like this: