Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (WSI) is dedicated to creating heirloom quality products that last a lifetime. Its entire family of brands (including Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, PBTeen, West Elm, Williams Sonoma, Williams Sonoma Home, Rejuvenation, and Mark & Graham) has always believed in sourcing the highest quality materials. Understanding that sustainability is a key component to quality has helped the retailer on its decade-long journey to responsibly sourced wood.
In 2008, WSI published its Wood Procurement Policy and made a commitment to use only wood from known, legal, and well-managed forests in its products, stating a preference for FSC-certified wood. That same year, William-Sonoma, Inc. educated its suppliers about the policy, began ongoing engagement to collect chain-of-custody documentation for all wood used in its products, and worked with suppliers to pursue FSC certification. The retailer has set a public goal to reach 50% responsibly sourced wood by 2021 – with the other 50% being legally sourced. Williams-Sonoma, Inc. tracks every single product to determine where the wood comes from, thus ensuring that any uncertified wood still originates from legal and traceable sources.
In addition to its 50% responsibly sourced wood goal, WSI also set a goal to achieve 100% responsibly sourced cotton in its textiles, and to achieve 75% diversion from landfills across the company by 2021. Its brands are also committed to ethical sourcing; they set a goal to pay $3 million in Fair Trade Premiums to the workers who manufacture their products by 2020.
Williams-Sonoma, Inc. has recently launched new icons in their catalogs and created shopping paths online to help customers find products with eco-attributes. It has also added training for its store associates on the environmental and social benefits behind the various standards and certifications they endorse. Those associates will be happy to answer any questions you may have. William-Sonoma, Inc. encourages customers to learn more about its goals and the growing selection of sustainably sourced products through each brand’s sustainability site, as well as its corporate responsibility scorecard.
WSI’s vision is to provide customers with high-quality, sustainably sourced products, recognizing that sustainability and quality are mutually reinforcing attributes. Its mission is to work hard to improve production within its supply chains – from environmentally beneficial materials to safe and healthy workplaces – and to push its industry partners to create a more responsible retail industry. William-Sonoma, Inc. embraces the fact that consumer preferences are shifting toward a focus on transparency. For WSI, this means not only trying to do “less bad,” but actively trying to “do good.”
Thank you for taking a little time to read about how Williams-Sonoma, Inc. is working to protect the planet. We hope you will use this information to make more informed choices about your next furniture purchase.