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Furniture Brands' facilities in U.S. all on EFEC program

HIGH POINT - Furniture Brands International has completed the American Home Furnishings Alliance's EFEC environmental management system at all of its domestic facilities, including plants, warehouses and offices.
     EFEC, or Enhancing Furniture's Environmental Culture, facilities must improve management of resources and raw materials, reduce energy and water consumption and reduce waste disposal and associated costs. AHFA developed the program in 1999.
     FBI has registered 18 facilities operated by Broyhill, Drexel Heritage, Henredon, Hickory Chair, Lane, Lane Venture, Maitland Smith, Pearson and Thomasville under EFEC.
     "Our reductions in utility usage and waste going to landfills have been significant," David Stout, director of environmental compliance for FBI, said in a press release. "Everyone has been surprised to see the extent of success of our EFEC programs in the amount of materials that can be diverted from landfills by reducing and recycling waste."
     The last FBI facilities to be registered included two Lane Furniture upholstery plants, a Lane distribution center and a Lane office and warehousing facility, all in Mississippi.
     Lane officials said the key to the EFEC program's success was empowering employees and then "getting out of their way" and allowing them to generate and implement energy-saving and waste-reduction ideas.
     AHFA member companies pay nothing to enter the program. A comprehensive guidance document helps steer the EFEC implementation at facilities through steps required for registration. Assistance and training are available from the AHFA professional staff. An annual maintenance audit is necessary to remain in the program.
     In all, the AHFA's EFEC program is in place at 81 facilities, including manufacturing plants, warehouses and corporate headquarters buildings in 15 states and Mexico.

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