Highlights of our recent work
The Furniture Industry Research Association has released details of their projects undertaken since the start of 2019. The breadth of work covers everything from biocides to kitchen design, alongside a focus on Brexit support in the event of a no-deal scenario.
Despite all the uncertainty over Brexit, the Research Association continued to release guidance in the event of a no-deal. Many updates came directly)from Government via the Furniture Industry Research Association’s attendance at weekly EU Exit Business Readiness Forums held by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).Updates covered many topics impacting trade including VAT, workforce and movement of goods.
Between January to March there were a number of publications released by the Furniture Industry Research Association, all of which were authored by their experts within their service provider, FIRA International. These publications included:
- 'Statistics Digest for the UK Furniture Industry'
- ‘The General Product Safety Directive, a guide to legislation and its application in the furniture industry’
- 'Kitchen Layout Design Guide - key resources for your design process’
- ‘Guide to European Biocidal Products Regulations'
- 'Electrical accessories incorporated into furniture - a guide to the UK regulations’
All of the above guides are free to members and available for purchase by non-members.
A long running focus of the Research Association is Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (Reach). Updates on this topic included work highlighting that five new substances were added to the Substances of Very High Concern. The Association has also been in dialogue with the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) looking for confirmation on their plans to further restrict formaldehyde. This is one issue which could have a huge impact on the furniture sector. All those who could be affected are urged to keep checking www.fira.co.uk/news for updates, and details of a possible industry consultation process.
In terms of recognition for organisations, BA Clic Components received a further FIRA Gold Certification, whilst Mobus, ACL 2000 Ltd and Whitemeadow all became Certified Companies under the Compliance Scheme for the Fire Performance of Upholstered Furniture.
Projects the Research Association are currently working on include a remanufacturing / reuse standard, and a key project looking into packaging alternatives for use across the furniture sector. All this will take in place in conjunction with keeping a weather-eye on Brexit. Individuals or organisation from across the furniture industry who would like to propose a project should submit details to firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally, turning to personnel, the Research Association confirmed Phil Reynolds as their new Chief Operating Officer. Prior to this Reynolds was General Manager at FIRA International, who are the service provider to the Furniture Industry Research Association.