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Managing our impact on the environment

Wood


Manufactured Product

Our approach: Given that wood-based products are central to our business, we continue to set challenging targets for the responsible use of these products and paper products. Our rolling KPI to monitor the provenance of our wood-based product is to ensure that 100% of our wood based product used in our manufacturing processes comes from certified sources.

  • In 2014, we used 213,000 cubic metres of chipboard and 29,000 cubic metres of MDF in our manufacturing process. As has been the case every year since 2006, all of this came from certified sources

All of the kitchen ranges which are manufactured at our factories are certified by the UK Forest Stewardship Council (UK FSCR) and over 99% of all products we manufacture in-house are FSCR compliant .

Our KPI for the use of cardboard packaging is that all packaging should be sourced from recycled or certified sources. In 2014 we used 2,300 tonnes of cardboard packaging all of which came from recycled sources. This was less than 2013, which itself was a reduction of circa 20% from 2012. We continue to look for design improvements and to achieve a similarly high standard in the future.


Bought-In Product

Our approach: Ethical and environmental sourcing continues to be an important factor when we determine which suppliers we use. In order to ensure consistency with our manufactured product, we aim to source from suppliers who have similarly high standards and international accreditation.

Energy

Our approach: Our efforts to reduce energy use across the business are recognised by our accreditation under the Carbon Trust Standard. During 2014, the Company was re-assessed and re-certified under the Carbon Trust Standard. As well as assessing the Group’s overall reduction in energy usage over a three-year period, the Standard also looks at general energy management systems across the business and the ways in which energy reduction is encouraged across all sites.

Manufacturing

One of our key metrics for energy usage in the factories is the electricity we consume per cabinet produced. During 2014, we continued to make significant improvements in our energy management through the efforts of our employees and the application of new technology. Our achievements in 2014 resulted in the figure dropping from 2.65kWh per cabinet in 2013 to 2.49kWh per cabinet in 2014, a 6% reduction from the previous year. We managed to achieve this reduction in our consumption per cabinet by production process efficiency improvement, HEAT Team energy saving campaigns, LED lighting conversions, plus numerous small engineering improvements.

Given the progress made in 2014, our target for 2015 is to maintain the consumption per cabinet level achieved in 2014.

Truck Fleet

During 2014, despite delivering 5% more volume, we reduced the number of kilometres driven by our trucks by 150,000km, a reduction of 0.7% on 2013. We have maintained the gains in miles per gallon (mpg) that we achieved in 2013 following the implementation of a new tracking system across the truck fleet in 2012.

In November 2014, an exercise commenced to replace the existing tractor fleet. By end of January 2015 all core fleet was Euro 6 compliant. We anticipate further improvements to mpg in 2015 with the new fleet.

Waste

Our approach: Our employees are encouraged to consider how we can improve our environmental performance in all areas by reducing consumption, reusing materials and recycling wherever possible.

In 2014, our Supply division continued to recycle waste in line with their rolling KPI which is to recycle more than 95% of all manufacturing waste produced

  • Of the 29,900 tonnes of waste produced, 97% was recycled.
  • Despite increased volume through-put, ‘out-of-gate’ waste decreased from 23,967 tonnes in 2013 to 21,514 tonnes in 2014. Similarly, the volume of waste sent to landfill decreased by 86 tonnes in 2014 to 644 tonnes.
  • In 2014, we converted 5,825 tonnes of sawdust into energy at our Howden and Runcorn sites to heat our factories. This equates to approximately 31k MWh of energy generated from sawdust in 2014. 6,426 tonnes of milled sawdust went to a local manufacturer of animal bedding where the sawdust is recycled for use in bedding for horses, cattle and other livestock. The reduction in this amount from the previous year was a result of 3,624 tonnes of milled sawdust being used for additional biomass during 2014.
  • We continue with the initiative started in 2007 to recover and repair pallets which would otherwise have been scrapped. Last year we recovered or repaired more than 143,000 pallets.
  • Our recycling programme in our Trade division, introduced in 2012, continues to be introduced to new depots as they open. Recycling volumes in 2014 were consistent with those achieved in 2013 and we will continue to work with our waste contractor to identify further recycling opportunities in the depots.