Wood Flooring Manufacturer Joins WWF

March 26, 2007

Burlington, NJ – Wood Flooring International recently announced two major steps forward in its efforts to develop environmentally-responsible supplies of hardwood flooring out of the tropics. The first is its membership in World Wildlife Fund's (WWF) North America Forest and Trade Network. The second is the launch of its Monteverde Collection, a line of wood flooring made in Costa Rica and sourced from forests certified to stringent social and environmental standards.

In joining WWF's North America Forest and Trade Network—a branch of its Global Forest and Trade Network—Wood Flooring International joins an international movement toward corporate responsibility in the forest products sector. Companies that purchase forest products must commit to what WWF calls a "stepwise approach" toward greater sustainability: first, they must perform an exhaustive audit of their supply lines so that they know the sources of all of their wood; second, steps are taken to ensure that all sources of supply are legally harvested; next, WWF helps companies make progress toward the goal of purchasing all of their forest products from well-managed forests.

"Wood Flooring International recognizes that to be a true leader in the wood flooring marketplace, we have a responsibility to the environment and, in particular, to promote the responsible management, conservation, protection and restoration of the world's forests," says Wood Flooring International's founder and CEO William Jopling. "By supporting responsible forestry, we can also help ensure the long-term sustainability of our supply of raw materials—an approach that makes good business sense for us and our customers."

 "Wood Flooring International has made a strong commitment to leverage its influence in the marketplace to promote the responsible management of forests," added Kerry Cesareo, WWF's manager of the North America Forest and Trade Network. "WWF will work closely with Wood Flooring International to support healthy forests, thriving forest-dependent communities, and a promising future for the species that live in forests."

Wood Flooring International and the more than 300 other companies participating in WWF's Global Forest and Trade Network commit to eliminating sources of supply that do not come from legal and well-managed sources. WWF in turn commits to providing support and guidance to help its partner companies make progress through the stepwise approach and understand complex issues such as responsible purchasing and illegal logging.

The Monteverde Collection is a prefinished engineered wood flooring line that includes exotic and unusual woods like Orosi, Salinas Cherry, Nicoyan Nogal, and Saddlewood along with well-known woods like Teak. The collection will be distributed nationally through wholesale flooring distributors. The Monteverde Collection is certified to the stringent environmental and social standards of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) by Scientific Certification Systems, a leading independent certifier. Because it is FSC-certified, the collection is suited to the growing market for environmentally-responsible building materials stemming from the burgeoning green building movement as typified by the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED® green building rating system.

Headquartered in New Jersey, Wood Flooring International was named among the 25 fastest growing companies by Philadelphia Business Journal. Sourcing from more than two dozen mills in 15 countries, Wood Flooring International manufactures, imports and distributes a wide variety of flooring collections. A growing percentage of Wood Flooring International offerings have environmental attributes such as FSC certification, low-VOC adhesives, recycled content, and rapid renewability (bamboo and palm).

For further information, contact Jason Grant, [email protected], Jessica McGlyn, [email protected], or go to www.worldwildlife.org/forests/naftn.cfm.

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