Herman Miller is the first company certified by global public health and environmental organization NSF International to the highest level for sustainable furniture – BIFMA level 3. Certification to level demonstrates Herman Miller’s Aeron, Celle, Embody, Mirra, and SAYL task seating; Setu multipurpose seating; and Caper stacking seating products all have achieved the highest level a product can reach under the BIFMA furniture sustainability standard.
The level designation signifies that a product has been verified by an independent third party certifier, and the numeric marking 1, 2, or 3 indicates the threshold of certification it has achieved. The certification process includes a comprehensive and independent assessment of the environmental and social impacts of a product’s manufacturing process and provides benchmarks for continual improvement and innovation within the furniture industry.
The Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association (BIFMA) partnered with NSF International to develop the consensus-based, multi-attribute ANSI/BIFMA e3: Furniture Sustainability Standard to harmonize sustainability standards for the office furniture industry and help distinguish environmentally-preferable furniture. The standard applies to all business and institutional furniture, including moveable walls, systems furniture, desking systems, casegoods, tables, seating and accessories, and materials and components manufactured by suppliers to furniture manufacturers. The level program is the certification program based on the ANSI/BIFMA e3 standard and is administered by BIFMA.
NSF International provides certification to the level program through its NSF Sustainability division. NSF Sustainability helps companies develop sustainable products, verify sustainable product claims, and develop standardized, objective methods of measuring sustainability. These services help instill marketplace confidence and promote acceptance of green products and services.
“With so many sustainable product claims currently flooding the market, purchasers of sustainable furniture and other products claiming to be sustainable are looking for real and verifiable support that a product really was produced sustainably,” said NSF Sustainability General Manager Tom Bruursema. “Reaching the highest level certification demonstrates Herman Miller’s leadership and commitment to the environment, and their dedication to help their customers meet their sustainability goals.”
“We are committed to growing our level-certified product offering in service to our customers’ ambitions for truly sustainable interiors,” said Gabe Wing, Herman Miller’s Director of Environmental Health and Safety. “Given Herman Miller’s historic industry leadership in work seating, it’s appropriate that these designs have achieved the highest standard of sustainability.”
NSF International has certified several other Herman Miller product lines. The product lines certified at level 2 include Canvas Office Landscape Private Office, Canvas Office Landscape Wall-Based, EthoSpace, Everywhere, Meredian, and Tu. The product lines receiving level 1 certification include Ambi, Equa2, Ergon3, and Foray seating. Also receiving level 1 certification are the Action Office, My Studio Environments, Passage, Resolve, and Series 5000 furniture systems, as well as the company’s Eames tables, and Avive tables and Teneo storage.