The home furnishings industry’s key manufacturers, retailers and sustainability leaders, taking part in a recent discussion about sustainability practices, encouraged attendees not to dive headfirst into green waters, to be aware that there is a cost to it, and to take steps to increase the percentage of their FSC-certified product and focus on their suppliers, Furniture World Magazine reports.
The panel agreed that there are two fronts where sustainability practices are being addressed.
The first is with consumers, who show their support with their pocketbooks. As that support becomes more mainstream, retailers are being called to not only create more sustainable products, but make them affordable. “We are in a race. We need to reach the consumer,” said Gerry Cooklin of South Cone and the Sustainable Furniture Council from the audience.
On the other front of the sustainability issue are vendors who supply retailers with products and materials – vendors who are embracing green practices less quickly.
Both retailers on the panel said they work closely with their manufacturer partners and suppliers on various sustainability standards, in some cases making this a condition of doing business. ABC Home said it has a “good wood” program and shares with vendor partners packets explaining sustainability.