The Environmental impact of paper receipts

Paper receipts are a part of our lives. They get handed to us at cash registers and then sit on our desks forever. And these days, we all know that's not good for the environment. But what precisely about paper receipts makes them so bad for the planet? And how can we fix this problem? In this article, I'll explain why paper receipts are so bad for our health and environment—and then I'll show you how to reduce your carbon footprint by switching from paper to digital receipts!

Paper Receipts are a massive waste

Paper receipts are a massive waste of trees and paper. They are also a waste of water, energy and time. Not to mention the cost to produce them.

If you think that this is an exaggeration, think again. According to the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), approximately 50 million trees are cut down yearly to make paper receipts and other printing materials. With an estimated 3 trillion paper receipts printed annually worldwide and a typical lifespan of around 30 days per receipt on average, that’s an enormous amount of natural resources being used unnecessarily when there’s an alternative in digital formats like SMS receipts or app notifications that can be sent directly from your business’ point-of-sale system back into your customer’s inbox.

Paper receipts contain toxic chemicals that seep into our bodies and the environment

You may not be aware that the paper receipts you throw away every day contain toxic chemicals. These chemicals can be absorbed through your skin, and they’re also harmful to the environment.

BPA (Bisphenol A) is a hormone-mimicking chemical found in most plastics, including receipts. It has been linked to cancer, infertility and other health problems in children and adults alike. BPS (Bisphenol S) is a replacement for BPA that some manufacturers have adopted because it’s less likely to leach into food or beverages when heated up — but it’s just as dangerous. Both of these chemicals are easily absorbed through our skin when we touch them; no matter how careful you are about washing your hands after touching a receipt, some of these toxins will get into your body anyway!

Paper receipts are coated with BPA or BPS

Paper receipts are coated with BPA or BPS, both of which have been linked to breast cancer, prostate cancer, infertility and other health problems.

BPA is found in the coating of most receipts. A study by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that some cash register receipts contain more than six times the levels of BPA allowed by European Union law.

The same report found that over 90% of paper receipts tested contained BPS and BPA — at levels even higher than those found on thermal paper used in grocery store self-checkout lanes and ATM machines.

We need to go digital everywhere, even in small businesses!

So you’ve decided to make the switch from paper receipts to digital ones. That’s great news for your wallet, the planet, and your customers.

Solutions like ClowID can help you in the process. For less than the monthly cost of buying paper, you can start using ClowID whatever POS system you are using. Plus ClowID comes with great added value in form of a smart dashboard with valuable analytics and powerful marketing tools to help you engage with your customers.


So, the next time you get a paper receipt, keep in mind that it’s not just something to throw away. The environmental impact of these little slips may be more than you think!