Martinsville, VA. - Approximately 800 employees of Hooker Furniture, including those at subsidiaries Bradington-Young and Sam Moore, have worked together to implement a corporate-wide environmental program across 11 different facilities. The effort took them 18 months.
The accomplishments at each facility were audited in September by the American Home Furnishings Alliance, which then granted the company EFEC registration. EFEC - "Enhancing Furniture's Environmental Culture" - is a voluntary environmental management program created by AHFA for furniture manufacturers.
Hooker's EFEC-registered facilities include four manufacturing plants, a distribution center and the offices of Cherryville, N.C.-based Bradington-Young; one manufacturing plant/office for Bedford, Va.-based Sam Moore; and the corporate office, central distribution center, secondary distribution center and customer support center for Martinsville, Va.-based Hooker Furniture.
"We are proud of the progress Hooker, Bradington-Young and Sam Moore have made through the efforts of our employees and steering committee to achieve EFEC registration," says Paul B. Toms Jr., chairman, chief executive officer and president. "We realize this is a journey, and we have just started down the path of environmental stewardship. We look forward to building on these initial accomplishments and becoming better educated on how we can preserve the earth's resources for future generations. We plan to put more measurements in place and involve even more employees and business partners in this critically important endeavor."
On a corporate-wide basis, Hooker achieved a 5 to 10 percent reduction in kilowatt hour usage over the EFEC implementation period. Water use was reduced by 5 percent. About 3.3 million pounds of waste was diverted from landfills, saving the company some $95,000. Bradington-Young generated additional recycling revenue of $428,471 over the 18-month implementation period. Leather scraps were sold to vendors who used them to create key chains, belts, purses and jackets.
"The teamwork of the employees of Hooker Furniture, Sam Moore and Bradington-Young has been outstanding as they worked together to achieve EFEC registration in 11 different facilities corporate-wide," notes David Davis, director of engineering at Hooker and corporate manager of the EFEC program at all three companies. "The employees have embraced the culture change of EFEC and have become fully engaged in environmental stewardship."
Hooker Furniture is ranked among the nation's top 10 largest publicly-traded furniture sources. The 85-year-old company produces and imports wood, metal and upholstered household furniture in home entertainment, home office, accent, dining, bedroom and bath furniture categories. It recently added the Opus Designs brand of youth bedroom furniture. Subsidiary Bradington-Young is an upscale motion and stationary leather furniture specialist, while Sam Moore is an upscale occasional chair specialist.
"The Hooker registration demonstrates a commitment to 'doing the right thing' while addressing the challenges of sustainable growth with common sense solutions," says Bill Perdue, AHFA's vice president of environmental affairs.
Hooker, Bradington-Young and Sam Moore join a growing list of furniture manufacturers that have EFEC-registered facilities, including Flexsteel, DMI, La-Z-Boy Residential; American Drew, Lea Industries, Kincaid Furniture and Hammary, all part of La-Z-Boy's Casegoods Division; Bernhardt Furniture; C.R. Laine; Fairfield Chair; Hickory Chair; and Vaughan-Bassett.
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The American Home Furnishings Alliance - located in High Point, N.C., and Washington, D.C. - is the largest association of home furnishings companies in the world and represents more than 240 leading furniture manufacturers and distributors, as well as nearly 200 suppliers to the furniture industry worldwide.