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Editor's Corner: Let’s Talk About Circularity

Furniture World Magazine


Editor's Corner


B ecause this Furniture World edition is sustainability-themed, I recently asked retailer Pam Miller of Miller Home, a Furniture First member in rural Pennsylvania, to describe how much her customers care about sustainability and circularity. “I’m not saying that we don’t care about it,” she replied, “but we don’t talk about it much.”

She’s in good company. Not every retailer can follow IKEA’s lead to become climate-positive by 2030 (as outlined in this issue). Neither can they realistically do what designer and circularity expert Laurence Carr, also featured in this issue, does to make her ultra-high-net-worth clients’ New York City homes (or second or third ones) ultra-healthy and sustainable.

So, if your focus is less on making net zero promises and more on reducing costs and attracting customers, that is understandable, especially given current market conditions. But there’s still a lot you can and probably should do to be good to the next generation while also doing what is profitable for your business.

That’s why we’ve assembled information here to help you: Get a leg up when recruiting younger hires who want what they do for a living to be valued; See how a focus on facilities management can substantially lower HVAC-related costs (lighting controls will be addressed in FW’s October edition); Discover if EV delivery trucks are a good fit for your operation (spoiler alert—it’s complicated); And, start thinking about Laurence Carr’s warning that “At some point, furniture companies that ignore sustainability and circularity issues will lose market share to competitors because of consumer demand shifts, regulation, cost issues and brand reputation.”

There are many ways to support sustainability in your business while pursuing other goals. For example, by incentivizing Miller Home’s customers to donate their gently used furniture to the furniture bank she founded, Miller gives that furniture a second life and keeps it out of landfills.

Wishing you good retailing,

Russell Bienenstock
Editorial Director/CEO

Russell Bienenstock is Editor-in-Chief of Furniture World Magazine, founded 1870. Comments can be directed to him at editor@furninfo.com.