Everyone agrees that the earth’s natural resources, such as clean water and productive farmland, are finite. That is, they won’t last long if we don’t take steps to conserve and renew them.
One of the ways we humans are endangering natural resources is by stuffing landfills with tons of avoidable waste. This waste comes in many forms, from unnecessary product packaging (think about the 15 cardboard inserts wedged in the box with your new coffee maker), to discarded trash that could have been recycled (like that sticky peanut butter jar).
According to the Frontier Group’s 2018 report, “Trash in America,” the United States represents only 4% of the world’s population, but we produce more than 30% of the planet’s waste. There are at least 2,400 landfills in the United States alone.
It’s concerning that a large portion—more than 20%—of our American garbage is made up of durable goods. And most of those goods are discarded furniture.
Disposable vs. Durable
Any furniture that has a short replacement cycle is essentially “disposable” furniture. It doesn’t last, and it quickly ends up in our nation’s landfills, creating a lot of extra trash. Contract furniture that’s built to withstand heavy use, however, offers the benefits of saving money and reducing the waste that’s choking our planet.
Consider the fact that a typical dining table on a residential campus is used three times a day, on some 360 or more days per year. That’s 1,080 uses annually. And with more facilities adopting multi-use spaces, those dining pieces instantly become workstations, craft tables and display areas as well. Greater use means a greater need for durability.
Protected by a five-year warranty, our signature TOUGH STUFF! seating, bedroom, dining room and study furniture is our most durable line. It features solid wood construction (no splits or splices), dovetail joints and precision trim. Also, the water-resistant lacquered surfaces and laminate tops meet heavy duty specifications. Everything in the collection is proven to last longer than ordinary retail furniture.
Many of our customers come back to us with terrific stories about how long their TOUGH STUFF! collections have lasted—sometimes with resale value, too. Now that’s some smart recycling.
When choosing furniture for your camp, treatment center or group home, consider durability not just in terms of your four walls, but also in a larger, global context.