Interface Goes Beyond Business As Usual

Over the last few months, one of the topics that I have been speaking on has been the need for firms to go beyond “Business as Usual,” and last week Interface Flooring once again provided an excellent example for how a firm can do just that.

Their announcement, Interface To Recycle Discarded Fishing Nets Into Carpet provides an overview of the program:

Global carpet tile manufacturer Interface, Inc. will soon begin using discarded fishing nets to make carpets, bringing both conservation and socioeconomic benefits to some of the world’s poorest coastal communities.

The company recently completed a pilot project, called Net-Works, with conservation charity the Zoological Society of London (ZSL). By establishing a community-based supply chain for discarded nets, Net-Works aims to improve the livelihood of local fishers, while providing Interface with an innovative source of recycled materials for its carpet tiles.

Discarded nets on the beaches or in the sea have a detrimental effect on the environment and marine life as they can persist for centuries. But most nylon from these fishing nets is the same material used to make carpet yarn.

In reading this article, there are several pieces of this program that I would like to highlight as innovative.

  1. It creates an economy for waste that is a proven detriment to our environment. Beyond polluting water, stray nets are known to kill and maim marine life for years.
  2. It engages local communities in an economy that is built on improving/restoring their environment.
  3. It, once again, reduces Interface’s need to procure virgin materials in the form of petroleum-based products to produce its carpet.

These three elements alone make it a program that shows Interface is still willing to look beyond business as usual, and for that, I hope you will take the time to learn more about Ray Anderson, Interface Flooring, and the process that he undertook to take Interface flooring up Mount Sustainability.

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