There is overwhelming scientific consensus that our world is experiencing dangerous global climate change, and equally overwhelming evidence that environmental pollutants are harming our health. It is urgent that we take immediate steps to minimize carbon emissions, reduce other pollutants, and remove unsustainable materials and harmful chemical inputs from all furnishings product platforms. SFC supports members of the industry in taking those steps.
The Sustainable Furnishings Council is a coalition of manufacturers, retailers and designers dedicated to raising awareness and expanding the adoption of environmentally sustainable practices across the home furnishings industry.
Our mission is to help companies reduce their environmental footprints as they grow, and to help consumers find healthy furnishings. To accomplish these lofty goals, we provide the best education, promotion, and networking opportunities available. We raise consumer interest in environmentally safe furnishings and promote the development of many more sustainable options.
SFC urges the use of Life Cycle Assessment as the best method for analyzing the environmental and health impact of products and a verifiable chain of custody as the only acceptable method for tracking wood flow. SFC members support the triple bottom line of PEOPLE - PLANET - PROFITS and lead the industry in best practices throughout their supply chains. Members are committed to continuous work toward a healthy future, inside and out.
Our goals are to:
- Raise awareness of sustainability issues
- Assist companies in adopting eco-friendly practices
- Serve as an information clearinghouse
- Provide a symbol of assurance for consumers
The Sustainable Furnishings Council was created and organized in the showroom of our founder, Gerry Cooklin, at High Point in October, 2006.
For years, Gerry had pursued sustainability as a personal passion. He had an awakening moment while camping in the Sierra Nevadas when he encountered a magnificent Juniper tree at an elevation of over 11,000 feet. He was humbled and, in an instant, recognized his duty to protect the rainforest, a prime source of wood for his furniture company, South Cone. He worked to "green up" his own manufacturing operations and to make a significant difference in his native Peru. Further, he started to organize small meetings at the High Point Furniture Market, which eventually blossomed into the founding meeting of SFC with some 70 members present. The SFC has since grown to over 400 members, the largest organization of its kind in residential furnishings.
Our structure has been key to our success. By reaching out to all constituencies in the industry, and including environmental heavyweights like Rainforest Alliance, World Wildlife Fund, a founder of the US Green Building Council as well as retailers, manufacturers, designers, and suppliers, we maintain a crucial balance in perspective. We welcome one and all to join us in doing our part for a healthy future!
Good Business That’s Good for Business
Importantly, we note that sustainability has become a mandate among the buying public. As consumers become more educated, they seek out acceptable choices that meet their needs for style, value, and eco-responsibility. Our organization is known for its rigorous compliance with established sustainability standards to ensure that all members are demonstrably committed to ongoing improvement.
In 2008, we launched a public advertising and in-store tagging program for consumers to identify retailers and products that exceed our threshold sustainability standards. Our Standards Committee reviewed all legitimate, independent certification programs to establish eligibility requirements. All who joined in 2007, our debut year, are designated Founding Members and we appreciate what their commitment has made possible.
The time is now — the solution starts with you!