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Gat Creek

5270 Valley Road
Berkeley Springs West Virginia
United States
Gat Creek
MADE IN AMERICA. To us, “Made in America” extends beyond simply saving a job. We take a holistic approach to furniture manufacturing by using sustainably harvested lumber, shortening oil-intensive transportation, minimizing waste, creating a safe family-friendly workplace, providing health insurance, supporting public schools and, to borrow a phrase, “always adding to the log pile.”

Best Practice Achievements

Sustainable Materials
We make a conscious effort to manage our materials selection, seeking materials we are confident are sustainable, such as legally harvested forest products, responsibly produced plantation products, and recycled content:
Recycling and Reclamation
We factor disassembly, recyclability and product reclamation into buying decisions. We offer a product reclamation/product reuse policy:
Return and Reuse
We use recycled or recyclable packing/packaging materials, offer blanket-wrap transportation arrangements for customers and have a carton return/reuse policy:
Chain of Custody
We ask for verifiable chain of custody documents (i.e. legal logging certifications) before buying products containing wood:
Decrease use of Toxic Chemicals
We have decreased our use/acceptance of known toxic chemicals for treatments, binders and finishes, replacing compounds that compromise indoor air quality and are harmful to human health:
Low Environmental Impact Textiles
We are asking our vendors for textiles that have a lower environmental impact, i.e. organic cotton in place of conventionally-grown cotton, as well as seeking other eco-friendly textiles:
Life Cycle Analysis
We are moving forward on doing a Life Cycle Analysis and/or are applying for SMaRT certification:
Local Sourcing
We extract, manufacture and distribute for consumer use within a 500 mile radius for at least a portion of our product line:
Third Party Certifications
We hold third party certifications for some of our products, or as a store, we promote and educate the consumer on the meaning of various third party certifications:
Sharing the Wealth
We take responsibility for sharing our commitment to sustainability up and down our entire supply chain, rewarding our vendors with increased business for partnering with us on sustainability issues:
Social Responsibility Code
We have a written Social Responsibility Code of Contact that is a baseline for employee relations:
Supplier Responsibility
We have written and distributed a Supplier Responsibility Code of Conduct for our vendors and conduct training at our partner facilities on the adoption of same:
Health and Safety Code Compliance
We and our partners meet or exceed all local health and safety codes and can document our health and safety working conditions in all our facilities/stores:
We Pay Living Wages
We pay a living wage rather than minimum wage and extend that around the globe:
We Sponsor Sustainability Events
We have participated in or sponsored in-store, community and/or regional educational events on sustainability and the environment:
We Inspect
We investigate and mitigate any negative environmental impacts from our operations:
Save Paper and Other Office Resources
We save paper and other office resources with a policy expressing an aversion to excess written documentation:
We Use Energy Specialists
We have had an energy specialist or utility company audit to measure our conventional energy usage and are on track to reduce it. We are replacing a portion of the energy we consume with certified renewable energy, either directly, via a program of our local utility, or via Green e-Power:
Updated Inefficient Equipment
We have replaced outdated and inefficient equipment, identified and changed wasteful resource procedures and implemented tighter operational controls:
Energy Efficient Lighting
We have increased the use of day lighting and/or are upgrading to more energy efficient lighting system:
Verified Sustainability Claims
We make only verifiable sustainability claims in adherence with FTC mandates against greenwash and in support of their Environmental Marketing Guides:
Committed to Training
We are committed to conducting training in-house and in the broader community about global climate change and our partnership with the SFC:
In keeping with our commitment to continual improvement, we are planning to take the following actions this year: On reducing energy consumption:

2022: Engineering a high efficiency dust collection system

2020: Same initiatives as 2019.

2019: We continue to monitor energy consumption monthly. We are using less energy per piece we manufacture each year over the last 6 years. We have installed new machinery, making it possible to produce more in-house. We thereby reduce our transportation footprint, which is a priority since in the US transportation has overtaken electricity generation as the leading source of CO2 emissions. We are continuing to reduce transportation emissions in this manner.

2018: Still working on 2017 initiatives.

2017: We plan to install an EcoGate variable drive system to make our dust collection more energy efficient and have explored ways to reduce our reactive power usage.

2016: We installed 64.4 kW of US-made PV solar panels on our south-facing roof that will replace electric we purchase from our coal-burning utility company, First Energy.

2014/2015: We re-lamped the entire factory with LED lighting. This recently completed project will reduce our lighting related electrical use by 70% and our overall electrical use by nearly 25%. We're also replacing a 1950's era planner with a new, more energy efficient planner/sander.

2013: We are updating lighting, replacing older machinery with more efficient new equipment, reducing our component outsourcing via our new machining capabilities, and expending the use of our biomass boiler in our air make-up system to further reduce propane usage.

2012: We are currently evaluating replacing our fossil fuel heating system with one that will use our wood waste--replacing non-renewable fuel with renewable fuel.

In keeping with our commitment to continual improvement, we are planning to take the following actions this year: On how we will manage our primary material or service to a more sustainable direction:

2022: Continue local sourcing of all Appalachain Hardwoods.

2020: I serve on the Appalachian Hardwood Manufacturers Inc (AHMI) board of directors and work to better learn our supply chain and assist in it's 100+ year record of sustainability. We're growing trees in the Appalachian Forest 2.4x faster than they are dying and being timbered.

2019: We continue to use all local woods, contributing to the health of our local forests.

2018: We are purchasing a new 5-axis CNC that will use 40%+ less electric than the 15 year-old 3-axis CNC it's replacing.

2017: We are purchasing a new CNC Lathe to bring machining of various parts in-house to reduce transportation of those parts.

2016: We are implementing various projects to continue to our lumber yield improvement in our woodshop and the transfer efficiency in our finishing room.

2014/2015: We are re-organizing our rough-end shop to improve lumber yield.

2013: With our new biomass boiler, we have achieved and maintain zero-waste with our sustainably-sourced lumber and are now focused on our finishing materials. This year we will move 100% water-based paints and are investigating opportunities to reduce formaldehyde used in our catalyzed lacquer and other clear top coats

2012: We will increase the number of products we manufacture that are FSC certified.

In keeping with our commitment to continual improvement, we are planning to take the following actions this year: On education and promotion of the sustainability cause:

2022: Serve as Treasure for SFC

2020: We continue to educate our retail customers about sustainability of solid Appalachian hardwoods and our central location that absolutely minimizes oil-intensive transportation.

2019: We are pleased to sell to several retailers who score Top Tier in the annual Wood Furniture Scorecard assessment.

2018: Same as 2017.

2017: Gat Caperton is serving on the SCF Executive Committee and chairing its Standards Committee.

2016: Distributing new catalogs with more extensive explanation of our sustainability system and results. Also looking for more opportunities to improve the transparency of our manufacturing.

2014/2015: Working with the SFC Standards Committee to better define exemplary standards and help promote the companies that achieve them.

2013: Provide education to customers and suppliers on the benefits of/and awareness to sustainability.