Environment& Circular Economy
A circular economy is a key enabler of the ambitious climate and environmental commitments of the European Green Deal. The European Furniture Industries strongly support the transition to a circular economy and are ready to be involved in making it a reality. However, a true circular economy can only be achieved through collaboration and requires the involvement of many actors, including policymakers, industry, experts, academia and consumers.
It is also important that EU initiatives take a long-term view and are implemented in a harmonised way by Member States, to avoid a fragmentation of the Internal Market and national efforts hampering EU objectives. Simple and smart circular economy rules are key, as well as clear EU-wide definitions and a common language.
EFIC supports sustainable product policies based on a lifecycle approach, aiming at promoting reuse, repairability, upgradability and addressing the presence of hazardous chemicals. As an example, EFIC campaigns since 2016 for the elimination of toxic flame retardants from furniture products as the use of these chemicals is an obstacle to a circular economy (and not only; see Alliance for Flame Retardant Free Furniture).
Moreover, EFIC is following closely Green Deal initiatives aimed at making circular economy
the norm, such as the Sustainable Products Initiative (SPI). In that context, the European
Furniture Industry welcomes the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation (ESPR), a key
proposal to promote circularity. Furniture is well suited for a circular economy, a transition that
is seen as an opportunity.
EFIC believes that improving consumer awareness to support circularity is key and that consumers need adequate information tools to compare different products on the market. Green Public Procurement is also a powerful tool to boost circular economy principles in practice and public authorities should be encouraged to promote circular products and solutions.
Lastly, the European Furniture industries welcome initiatives to empower the management sector and to accelerate the use of waste and believe that a harmonised Extended Producer Responsibility scheme for furniture at EU level would be key to ensure an efficient management of furniture products when they reach their end of life.