Wood is the material most commonly associated with IKEA furniture, and for good reasons. It’s renewable, recyclable, durable, ages beautifully and it is an important part of our Scandinavian design heritage. At IKEA we believe that sourced in a responsible way, wood is a key change driver for climate mitigation. In 2012, we set a goal that by 2020 our wood would be from more sustainable sources. We are happy to announce that we have reached this goal and today, more than 98% of the wood used for IKEA products is either FSC-certified or recycled.
New technologies, new hobbies, a new family member ... both small and large changes affect life and people's needs at home, especially when it comes to all the things that we need space for. Petra Kammari Enarsson is a product developer at IKEA and often visits the homes of customers to experience their everyday living and how good storage can make life at home a little easier. She remembers a family in Copenhagen which expanded every other weekend with the daughter from a previous relationship. ”She didn't have her own room, but the family had a solution where she had a loft bed in the living room and her private things were in a chest on the floor”. Petra thinks it's a good example of how more and more people are living in small spaces, and that a large part of everyday living takes places in the living room where we want things to be both practical and stylish.
Another obvious trend around the world is that many people move more often - just as Petra did when she was young. ”The problem is that a lot of storage furniture is so inflexible – upon moving or new needs arising, they can't be adapted. This means storage isn't optimal and it's difficult to keep track of all your things”. These insights inspired Petra and her colleagues to start looking at a more flexible and personal storage solution – something that can easily be updated so that people don't have to buy new furniture as soon as something in life changes. Petra then started to think about those fishing boxes she had when she was young and which were so easy to stack and move as needed. What if you could make a piece of furniture which consists of various smart modules that can be easily moved around, removed and added to?
Petra and her team started by ordering cardboard boxes in various sizes. They took the boxes to different room environments where they moved them around like building blocks – stacking and combining them in various ways. The team also researched detailed facts about storage: on average, how many magazines do we have at home? What’s the ideal height for people to put down their mobile phones? ”Many of us put keys, telephones or bags in a specific place when we come home. We usually do it automatically, without thinking about it”, says Petra. The height that seems to suit most people is 31½", so a shelf at that height was a given in the mix of shelves, drawers and cabinets in different colors and styles that eventually became the EKET storage series. ”I'm so pleased that we chose to prioritize playfulness and freedom of choice with all the colors and sizes of EKET”, says Petra, who's looking forward to visiting more homes. ”I think that the customers will find lots of exciting combinations that we haven't even thought of!”.
Forests contribute to maintaining balance in the atmosphere, purify the air that we breathe and are part of the water cycle. They nourish wildlife biodiversity and provide homes for indigenous communities who depend on forests for their livelihoods. 90% of plant and animal species living on the planet need forests to survive. They provide sources of food, fuel, timber and many other ecosystem services that we rely upon. Sourcing approximately 19 million m3 of roundwood per year from some 50 countries, IKEA has a significant impact on the world’s forests and the timber industry and a huge responsibility to positively influence how wood is sourced. Responsible wood sourcing and forest management ensure that the needs of people dependent on forests are met, that businesses can work sustainably, that forest ecosystems are protected and biodiversity is enhanced.
At IKEA, we work with strict industry standards to promote responsible forestry. We don’t allow any wood in our supply chain from forest areas that are illegal or contain high conservation values or from forest areas with social conflict. Before starting to work with IKEA, suppliers must demonstrate that they meet IKEA critical requirements on wood sourcing. IKEA requires all suppliers to source wood from more sustainable sources (FSC-certified or recycled wood). All suppliers are audited regularly and non-compliant suppliers are required to implement immediate corrective actions. By working together with our suppliers, we are proud to announce that we have reached our more sustainable sources goal, which we set out to achieve by 2020. Today more than 98% of the wood used for IKEA products is either FSC-certified or recycled.
As pressure on the world’s forests and the surrounding eco-systems increases due to unsustainable agriculture, the expansion of infrastructure and illegal logging, it is time to take an even more holistic approach to protect and support these important resources for generations to come. The IKEA Forest Positive Agenda for 2030 set out to improve forest management, enhance biodiversity, mitigate climate change and support the rights and needs of people who depend on forests across the whole supply chain and drive innovation to use wood in even smarter ways. The agenda focuses on three key areas: • Making responsible forest management the norm across the world. • Halting deforestation and reforesting degraded landscapes. • Driving innovation to use wood in smarter ways by designing all products from the very beginning to be reused, refurbished, remanufactured, and eventually recycled.
For many years, IKEA has partnered with businesses, governments, social groups and non-governmental organisations to fight forest degradation and deforestation and increase the volume and availability of wood from responsibly managed forests both for our own supply chain and beyond. We are on a journey to improve global forest management and make responsible wood sourcing the industry standard, contributing to building resilient forest landscapes and improve biodiversity.