Today, Tom Reynolds, chief executive of the Bathroom Manufacturers Association, outlines the importance of sustainable practices for bathroom manufacturers.

British consumers are increasingly showing a heightened environmental consciousness, as evidenced by supermarkets abandoning plastic packaging and the fashion industry favouring longer-lasting products rather than ‘fast fashion’. In line with these positive developments, examining the environmental impact of furnishings and decor within bathroom projects and exploring how we can mitigate it more effectively is essential. 

Fortunately, making sustainable choices in bathroom design is simpler than you might imagine. When considering products made from wood or board, such as vanity units, fitted furniture and wall panels, it is highly recommended to prioritise items crafted from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified timber and board. 

I recently spoke with Rosie Teasdale, executive director of the FSC, as part of the BMA’s Sustainability Forum, which took place during the InstallerSHOW 2023 event. She explained that their independent endorsement verifies ethical and sustainable sourcing practices for wood-based products, ranging from paper to timber. By opting for FSC-certified goods and products made with certified materials, you can be confident that your purchase was manufactured responsibly and ethically, with due consideration for people, wildlife, and the environment. 

The significance of choosing FSC-certified products for your bathroom design cannot be overstated. Without it, verifying whether a product has been created using timber sourced from well-managed and ethically operated forests is impossible.  

However, opting for products that utilise FSC-certified supplies offers several advantages. Not only does it help reduce our carbon footprint, it indicates a company’s commitment to responsible sourcing, often translating to greater care in their production processes. Consequently, the result is higher-quality pieces that boast increased durability. 

As bathrooms become more compact, the demand for bathroom furniture is rising, driven by the need for efficient storage solutions. Finding bathroom furniture made with FSC-certified materials is readily achievable, as numerous retailers offer a wide range of furniture styles and finishes, often accompanied by lifetime guarantees.  

Another noteworthy trend is the growing use of wall panels and coverings as an alternative to traditional ceramic tiles. The extensive range of finishes, combined with the ease and speed of installation, contributes to their popularity. Moreover, these wall panels are more easily recyclable at the end of their lifespan and, with no grouting, are easier to clean and maintain.  

Therefore, if you seek an eco-friendly approach to your bathroom designs while still enjoying premium furniture and wall panels that stand the test of time, you must ensure that the products you choose are produced using FSC-certified materials. 

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