The Furniture Industry Sustainability Programme (FISP) was born as the furniture industry requested a method of being able to demonstrate their sustainable credentials. In the late 1990s and early 2000s sustainable development, environmental stewardship and resource management considerations were increasingly popular topics of debate.
The United Kingdom Government wanted to embed sustainability considerations within its procurement tenders and other Government Policies were also starting to request information on the sustainability credentials of its suppliers.
The furniture industry response to this demand was to come together through the Furniture Industry Environment Committee (FIEC) and via the industry trade associations, the Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA), the National Bed Federation (NBF), the British Contract Furniture Association (BCFA) and the British Furniture Manufacturers Association (BFM), along with experts from within the furniture industry to lead the development of the scheme.
It is fair to say that FISP has come a long way since its inception in 2007. The criteria that companies need to comply with in the FISP audits is robust and detailed. FISP has always challenged its members to demonstrate continual improvement of its sustainable business operations.
The breadth of sustainable development that is assessed has grown steadily and reflects the numerous social, economic and environmental touch points that exists throughout the furniture supply chain.
The most recent example of the development of FISP follows Steering Committee approval to develop a new section for FISP assessment that reflects the growing discourse around health and wellbeing within the workplace.