HIGH POINT — The Sustainable Furnishings Council and the National Wildlife Federation have released the third annual edition of the Wood Furniture Scorecard, an assessment of wood sourcing policies at 94 furniture companies across North America.
“Everyone’s future health depends upon the health of forests, so pointing customers to sustainably sourced wood is of paramount importance,” said Susan Inglis, SFC executive director. “Working with furniture retailers to improve their sourcing policies is good for their business development as well as for their customers’ satisfaction.”
Companies can earn a total of 31 possible points for scorecard. These include nine for having a robust sourcing policy, 14 for the way in which that policy is implemented and another nine for exhibiting an overall commitment to sustainability.
This year’s analysis revealed 13 companies that earned top scores of 18 or above; 13 additional companies coming in at the next level with high scores of 12 to 17 and four honorable mentions.
The top scoring companies include: Circle Furniture, Cisco Home, City Furniture, CounterEv Furniture, Crate & Barrel, Ikea, Mebl Transforming Furniture, Re.Dwell, Simbly, Plank and Coil, Target, Vermont Woods Studios and Williams-Sonoma Inc.
Inglis said that, even with the new set of challenges faced by the furniture industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more companies than ever have demonstrated their commitment to responsible wood sourcing and promoting a more sustainable future.
This year’s top scoring company is Mebl, which is based in Brooklyn, N.Y., and has been in operation for five years, dedicated to expanding the marketplace for beautiful, high quality furniture re-imagined from old wood and metal.
“We only use reclaimed wood to make furniture,” said Michael Hirschhorn, Mebl founder and CEO. “We source from small scale artisan and furniture makers. Our focus is on changing the perception of reclaimed wood furniture, which is generally made from very high quality reused materials.”
Also earning a top score on this year’s scorecard, Williams-Sonoma published its first internal wood procurement policy in 2008, which acted as the first step in setting expectations with the supply chain.
“In the beginning, we didn’t see much traction, many of the vendors that did become Forest Stewardship Council certified struggled to increase volume,” said David Williams, Williams-Sonoma corporate social responsibility manager. “We then created a good, better and best framework, which gained momentum and we started setting public goals in 2015.”
The company has committed to having 50% of all wood it uses be sustainable by 2021 to show partners that they are serious about sustainability, according to Williams.
The scorecard aims to increase companies’ ambition for creating robust sustainable wood sourcing policies by building awareness of best practices for responsible wood sourcing, supporting the progress of companies working to advance their policies and recognizing leadership within the furnishings industry.
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