01 Apr 2021 • Partner Content
'Health is first' when it comes to designing sustainably, thinks Andreu World
Andreu World incorporates the idea that user wellbeing is paramount to creating circular design products into its leading sustainability practices.
Since its inception as a family business 66 years ago, Spanish furniture manufacturing brand Andreu World has valued sustainable practices. Over the years, the company has harnessed emerging technologies to optimize its business, translating a steadfast resolution for quality and environmental and user responsibility to continuous product innovation. World Design Organization president Srini Srinivasan believes that Andreu World’s approach ‘beckons toward a future where sustainable design and development can become commonplace.’
‘Social, environmental and cultural sustainability as well as circular economy approaches should be commonplace instead of lauded as bold or original,’ says Srinivasan. ‘It is simply good business and good practice. At its heart, design has always been about finding a “better way” in all that we do on a daily basis. A way guided by ecological design thinking and processes, one that considers the end users and the environment in which they live, and one that recognizes the importance not only of sustainable design, but also sustainable use of design.’
Like Srinivasan explains, true sustainability is as much about the wellbeing of users as it is about environmental responsibility. It’s why Andreu World believes ‘health is first’. Prioritizing ergonomics, implementing biophilic design principles and meeting stringent hygiene, safety and maintenance requirements is, in the team’s eyes, ‘necessary to improve the quality of spaces’ today, especially in light of the pandemic. Their collections are marked with the Healthy Hospitals Interiors (HHI) certification (recently migrated into Practice Greenhealth), which helps global hospitals and health centers eliminate polluting materials.
To achieve these high levels of quality, safety and environmental respect, Andreu World ensures that designs, raw materials, and other components comply with such international standards and certifications. It was the first company in the world to carry the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC®) Chain-of-Custody on its full product catalogue. The team has committed considerable research and development resources to creating eco-friendly materials for its products. And they strive for utmost longevity: in 2007, Andreu World was the first European company to offer a 5-year guarantee. That guarantee has since doubled to 10 years.
Andreu World’s ultimate goal is to have 100 per cent of its materials be a part of the circular economy by 2030, a mission shared by its designers and suppliers. Three material innovations reflect this intent. The award-winning Pure ECO® comprises 100 per cent recycled thermo-polymer scraps and is 100 per cent recyclable. BIO is a biodegradable and compostable thermo-polymer of natural origin, with an effect similar to wood (it has used for the Nuez Lounge BIO® chair). For its upholstered options, there is Circular ONE, a low-impact, recyclable fabric crafted from recycled PET bottles and textile waste.
The brand maintains that its essential to be thinking about a product’s full lifecycle from the time it is conceived, applying all resources to ensure its circularity and flexibility of use. That perspective has helped them breathe new life into their iconic products, as well – many, like Flex and Ronda, have been reissued to meet modern standards. In a time where all organizations should be looking to implement sustainability-led frameworks, leaders like Andreu World indeed show what the future could look like.
Andreu World will furnish the Spanish Pavilion at Expo Dubai 2020, which will be held from October 2021 to March 2022. Seats and tables developed from circular, resistant, durable and environmentally friendly materials have been selected for the space, including the Nuez Lounge BIO.
Cover image: Fundación Kalida is a reference center in Barcelona that provides comprehensive support to people with cancer. Patricia Urquiola's Nuez Chairs outfit the space.