August 29, 2016
Sustainability Today: NY NOW’s illuminating seminar
Celebrating its 10th year, Sustainable Furnishings Council’s (SFC) Executive Director, Susan Inglis enthusiastically led a discussion about sustainability in the market today. The SFC is a membership organization whose members are companies involved the home furnishing industry in a number of ways. Manufacturers of furnishings, interior design firms and stores where all these products are sold, for example. The non-profit’s mission is to promote sustainable practices to find a strong balance between the environment, local economies and social equity.
Attendees at this intimate seminar shared what they were most looking forward to learning, including a woman starting an online business who recognizes that sustainability is a hot topic and wanted to see how it would affect her decision-making.
“Sustainability is an umbrella term,” said Inglis. “All the issues that fall under this wide umbrella vary. There are a lot of different issues that are mostly related to each other that we can trace pretty clearly.” Sustainability in general focuses on reducing toxic waste pollution and resource conservation. Today, this means specifically global warming and indoor air quality. It’s about taking care of the eco-system and the communities that depend on this eco-system.
More than 80 percent of customers are worried about the range of issues that impact our world. Recycling and purchasing products they consider to be eco-friendly are the main ways they’re contributing to reduce their carbon footprint.
Inglis’ seminar worked in tandem with the curated sustainability display featuring exhibitors that were up for Eco Choice Awards at this summer’s NYNOW market. With seminar information in mind, participants, as well as all show attendees, were able to peruse a collection of products for help in deciding what to purchase for their retail space; inspiring ways to use recyclable materials to create their own products to manufacture; and, on a personal level, pick and choose great gifting ideas that are friendly to our earth.
More than 100 exhibitors were on this award list, and narrowing it down to a select few was no easy feat. With products ranging from children’s toys and personal wellness products to apparel and accessories, there was undoubtedly something for everyone within the confines of this exhibit. This year’s Eco Choice Award winners are:
Most Innovative: Tokens & Icons for its MLB Game Used Baseball Wool Hat
Most Sensitive Use of Materials: CounterEvolution for it’s the Looper Lazy Susan
Most Sellable: Spinster Sisters for its Salt Soak
The winning products and all finalists were on display within NY NOW’s SustainAbility: design for a better world exhibit, an exhilarating exhibit that attracted attendees throughout the week.