Bradco has been a pioneering organization for the advancement of sustainable eco design standards and green building materials. This is because I believed in sustainable practices and holistic approaches to running my business long before marketers know the potential niche for green building materials. In this blog post I will touch on certain aspects that I consider to be the most critical when it comes to sustainable eco design and the utilization of green building materials in kitchen and bath remodeling. Basically these tactics fall into two categories: Internal factors that can be optimized by setting eco friendly standards within your business and External factors such as choosing certified green partners and suppliers that hold themselves to the same stringent standards as we do. This information will help you distinguish between truly green organizations and businesses that might engage in ‘green washing’, a term used to describe the deceptive use of green PR or green marketing in order to promote a misleading perception that a company’s policies or products (such as goods or services) are environmentally friendly.
Internal Ways to Embrace Eco Design and Green Building Materials
We believe that green products will only have a significant impact on the design industry if they are practically priced and available to the average consumer. That’s why at Bradco we never add a premium to a product just because it’s green. In our Los Angeles showroom Bradco provides clients with holistic eco design solutions that showcase our large selection of green building materials and products including; cabinets, sinks, fixtures, faucets, countertops and tiles. Also included in our green offering is a wide variety of energy efficient appliances including dual-flush toilets, water filtration devices, tankless water heaters and drawer-based dishwashers. Eco Design is not just about offering green products to your customers; our showroom is outfitted with energy efficient practices and standards such as lighting and timing devices, in-house recycling programs for aluminum, plastic and paper as well as water filtration devices for employees and customers to reduce plastic bottle waste. Even our packing material is collected after use and reused to the maximum extent. These are just some of the standards we have set in place for our company here in the US. Even more challenging can be controlling the external factors such as suppliers, post product partners and manufacturing.
External Ways to Embrace Eco Design and Green Building Materials
Just as important as enforcing tough internal standards for our business was choosing external partners that hold themselves to the same green building material standards and have the accreditation to prove they adhere to sustainable forestry practices. Our wood suppliers harvest their lumber from sustainability-certified forests in Costa Rica. Costa Rica is a perfect place to source our green building materials from because the country is undertaking ultra-progressive reforestation projects. In 2007 the Costa Rican government announced the commitment for Costa Rica to become the first carbon neutral country by 2021. The accompanying photos show our Operations Manager in Costa Rica auditing the harvest to guarantee quality and harvesting standards. Bradco can use FSC certified green building materials in any of our cabinetry projects (FSC stands for Forestry Stewardship Counsel). The counsel sets forth principles, criteria and standards that span economic, social and environmental understanding that companies adhere to in order to reduce impact on the environment.
Bradco provides custom cabinetry made from non-toxic, formaldehyde-free wood and optional FSC green building materials. We also recommend that low or no VOC finishes and formaldehyde free adhesives are also used. We own our own cabinetry factory in Mexico and have direct control over the quality of the goods that are produced there as well as the eco friendliness of their business practices. Aligned with the reduction of environmental impact, Bradco also takes care to reduce the amount of waste created at our manufacturing plant in Tijuana. Since the manufacturing of cabinets creates an excess of sawdust, we re-use all our sawdust by collecting it and donating it to a nursery where it is mixed into their compost used to plant new vegetative growth for the Morelos Park – considered the largest ecological reserve in Tijuana. In addition to the benefit of green manufacturing standards our factory is located close to our consumers; therefore we have a very low carbon footprint, unlike cabinets that are shipped from thousands of miles away to the consumer.
There is a broad spectrum of environmental and ethical standards within the kitchen & bath industry. I’ve found that many customers do a lot of research on Bradco’s environmental commitment prior to coming into our showroom. Since its conception, Bradco has been committed to championing the embrace of green building materials and holistic approach to eco design. Long before the green movement was trendy, Bradco invested in the necessary research and development, partnered with strategic green suppliers, and implemented a green approach to building our custom cabinets. Thankfully in the last decade the Southern California market has increased demand in these products and services from us. If you’re looking to go green, Bradco is the regional leader in green building materials and the eco design expertise that will help you design a kitchen which shows you love your kitchen as well as your planet.