Our

environmental responsibility

Our

environmental responsibility

Choosing a Kährs wood or vinyl floor is a smart and green choice for the environment, both indoors and for our planet.

Kährs is one of the world’s oldest and most innovative manufacturers of wood and parquet floors. Our innovations have radically transformed the global wood flooring industry and contributed towards sustainable development. We are always trying to find ways to make our production process more environmentally friendly, including when we manufacture floors from other materials like vinyl.

We combine wood floors with their natural characteristics and vinyl floors with innovative technology to offer a range of the highest quality. Through the use of wood and supporting reforestation; choosing phthalate-free materials for our vinyl floors; and environmentally conscious production, we do our best to continually drive sustainable development in the flooring industry.

 

Wood

A wood floor keeps your feet warm on a cold day and cool on a hot day. Wood’s cellular structure creates thousands of tiny air pockets per cubic centimetre. This makes wood an effective material for insulation, more so than tile or laminate, for instance.

The material of the future

Many architects and designers argue that wood is the material of the future. This is largely due to the fact that wood is one of our most environmentally friendly resources. The use of wood as a manufacturing material stimulates reforestation, which combats climate change through acting as a carbon sink.

There are many reasons to choose a wood floor. Besides being warmer and more environmentally friendly than other materials, it can also “soften” a room. A wood floor can transform a bare or severe room into a comfortable and welcoming space. Laying a wood floor is a nice way to invite nature into your home.

Wood floors provide a healthy indoor environment

Wood has many advantages over other manufacturing materials. It is the strongest material in proportion to its weight, it is a renewable resource and it is easy to work with. Besides these qualities, wood helps regulate indoor climate. Kährs participated in a research project, Wood2New, which showed wood flooring’s ability to absorb moisture from the air and later release it back when conditions are drier. In this way, our floors contribute to maintaining a comfortable indoor environment.

Sustainable forestry

Kährs actively engages with forestry organisations and NGOs to work towards sustainable reforestation. We source the majority of our raw materials from Sweden, where forests have grown in volume by 60% over the past 100 years. In Europe, forests are growing by an average of 6,000 km2 per year – something we at Kährs are very happy about.

 

Manufacturing

Over the years, Kährs has come up with several innovations that have enabled an environmentally focused production model. We look for ways to improve air quality, reduce noise pollution and use less water in our manufacturing process. In this way, we are constantly striving to reduce our impact on nature.

A few example cases:

- In 1984 Kährs became the first to use water-based surface treatments for the purpose of reducing environmental impact.

- We developed a system for our manufacturing in Nybro that prevents any waste of wood. All wood waste – bark, sawdust, wood shavings – goes to a local energy company. Each year 6,150 Swedish homes are heated by our recycled wood waste.


- Water treatment is a necessity if our society is to survive. At Kährs, we take this very seriously. Our factory in Nybro has given rise to five international PhD dissertations from Linnaeus University in Southern Sweden and the opening of a new water treatment facility in 2016. Above all, it has resulted in a new way of using the natural qualities of vegetation to treat water used in the wood industry. It is a technique that can be used anywhere in the world. Research examined both water from the manufacturing of flooring and leachate from irrigation. The methods developed in Nybro are applicable to variety of different industries.

For more information about our efforts towards green manufacturing, see our EMAS report.

 

Product

Kährs offers hundreds of different floors to choose from – everything from wood floors in different types of timber to modern, durable vinyl floors in a variety of appearances. Our goal is to provide beautiful, innovative and functional floors the world over. At the same time, we strive to develop our manufacturing in line with our concept of environmentally sustainable production.

An environmentally sound floor

At Kährs we’ve worked long and hard on environmental issues. One of our revolutionary innovations is multi-layer parquet, introduced in 1941. The incorporation of recycled and fast-growing timber reduces environmental impact because significantly less mature trees are used per floorboard. Today, multi-layer parquet is the standard for most wooden flooring produced throughout the world.

The first to use glue-free joints

In 1999 Kährs introduced Woodloc® and changed the flooring market. 

The new joints enabled the floor to be locked together mechanically and laid entirely without the use of glue. We continually try to use the most environmentally friendly stains and lacquers in our manufacturing process. Furthermore, our surface treatments make our floors easy to keep clean without the use of strong chemicals.

Phthalate-free vinyl floors that last

We manufacture our vinyl floors with high-quality materials so that they’ll last as long as possible. The floors are extremely durable and simple to keep clean without the use of strong chemicals, which gives them a long lifetime in your home and a low long-term environmental impact. As with our wood floors, we try to save resources by ensuring there is as little wastage as possible during the manufacturing process.

When manufacturing our vinyl floors, we only use material that is free from phthalates. This means that the vinyl floors have very low emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC), contributing to healthier, cleaner indoor air quality.