According to Handy, not all eco-friendly furniture is created equal or serve their purpose well. Thus, it is crucial to consider many important factors for choosing eco-friendly furniture so that you can ensure your purchase has the maximum positive impact on the environment.
Tips & Tricks
Here are a few tips you can follow when shopping for eco-friendly furniture:
- Choose furniture that can be recycled and disassembled – Good eco-friendly furniture should be tough and durable but also easy to repair, disassemble, and recycle if they get damaged. We suggest you choose furniture that are certified by MBDC’s C2C or Cradle 2 Cradle. Such furniture can be easily taken apart and recycled when they reach the end of their lifespan.
Avoid hybrid furniture since they are impossible to disassemble or take apart and are not so easily repaired.
- Look for certified sustainable wood – Trees are an incredibly important natural resource that offer a variety of benefits including keeping our atmosphere cool, providing oxygen and absorbing carbon dioxide, serving as a habitat for many types of animals, insects, and more. Thus, it is essential to limit or at least control deforestation and harvest wood through means that are sustainable.
One way to ensure that you choose furniture made from a sustainable method is to verify whether it has the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification which promotes sustainable ways to harvest wood.
- Consider bamboo furniture – Bamboo is a versatile and eco-friendly building material for many types of furniture since it is so fast-growing. It enables the easy maintenance of healthy bamboo forests and can be grown without any pesticides which also preserves soil quality and health.
The best part is that bamboo can be molded into furniture, sliced up to make window blinds, flattened to make flooring, and pressed into veneers, and more.
- Prioritize furniture made from recycled materials – The truly eco-friendly furniture is made from recycled materials composed of recycled plastic and metals since these require less resources and processing power to create and yet maintain the same level of quality.
Thus, we suggest you look for the ‘recycled’ label when choosing eco-friendly furniture for your home or office.
- Consider furniture made from reclaimed wood – Reclaimed wood furniture is incredibly eco-friendly since these are made using better resource efficiency and cost less to produce. This is because reclaimed wood is created using the materials of old furniture, flawed wood, old houses, scraps from factories, logs, and other wood that have been discarded.
Since wood lasts a long time and can be reused, even old and discarded wood can be converted to reclaimed wood that can be used to make eco-friendly furniture.
Handy suggests you ensure that the eco-friendly furniture you choose is free of any volatile organic compounds (VOCs) since they are harmful to the environment as well as your health. You can look for Greenguard certification to ensure that the furniture you choose has low toxicity and free of harmful chemicals.