Mississippi, AHFA cooperate on environment
Furniture Today Staff -- Furniture Today, February 1, 2011
HIGH POINT — The American Home Furnishings Alliance's environmental stewardship program EFEC will be used as a fast track option for entering The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality's en- Hance environmental steward program.
The enHance program, which stands for Envision Heightened Awareness, Nurturing Conservation and Environmental Excellence, is a voluntary program that for the past two years has recognized environmental stewards in the state.
Participants make a commitment to address and achieve ongoing environmental improvements and have related policies, projects, management processes and a commitment to compliance with environmental issues.
Enhancing Furniture's Environmental Culture, or EFEC, aims to improve raw materials management, reduce water and energy consumption, reduce waste disposal costs and increase recycling efforts, among other initiatives.
State authorities and the AHFA will work with Mississippi's Franklin Furniture Institute to promote the EFEC.
Last spring, the Institute partnered with AHFA to help some Mississippi furniture manufacturers complete the EFEC program. The institute's director, Bill Martin, and two of its staffers have been certified to provide EFEC training and perform audits.
Bill Perdue, AHFA vice president, said in a press release that the state officials "evaluated AHFA's EFEC program and determined that it mirrors the objectives in their enHance program."
Flexsteel Inds.' Starkville, Miss., plant is the first EFECregistered manufacturing facility to complete the application for membership in the enHance program.
Mississippi furniture companies that achieve membership in the enHance program also would have a streamlined process for completing EFEC.