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How To Buy Wood Furniture Responsibly

Wood is perhaps the most commonly used material in decor and furnishings. Solid wood is durable and lends a cosy feel to any interior. However, before you purchase your furniture, stop and think about where your wood furniture is from. Be a responsible consumer, and find out how and where the wood for your furniture is harvested so you can make an informed purchase decision.

Read the labels

Certification programmes have popped up to address sustainable management of forests and plantations. Two of the most popular global certifications are from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC). Responsible for forestry management, PEFC and FSC promote the use of forests while preserving the environment, and protecting local communities.

Beyond the labels

Products should be able to withstand the test of time. The origin if the wood should give you an idea of how sustainable it is. Wood like rubber wood, oak, maple and softwoods (such as fir, pine and cedar) are sustainable. Choose pieces made from one kind of wood (like walnut, oak or maple) instead of a combination of different types. Look out for the build quality: a well-made piece that lasts is more sustainable.

Where to buy

All pieces made with reclaimed timber have a FSC label to show that the products are made with FSC-certified recycled wood. Online furniture store Ethnicraft uses FSC-certified wood in most of their products. Local manufacturer d-Bodhi brings in pieces made with FSC-certified wood and is also big on recycling, turning reclaimed teak, iron, denim, boats and wooden pallets, into furniture and decor pieces. Other stores selling furniture made from reclaimed wood include Mountain Teak and John Erdos Home.

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