Sustainability and the Environment
Our steps to limit our impact on the environment and moving towards manufacturing sofas with a more sustainable life cycle.
Sustainability and the Environment
At Long Eaton Sofas®, we recognise the need to limit our impact on the environment and we understand that there is an increasing need for furniture with a sustainable life cycle. We know that becoming eco-friendly is a large task and so we are making steps towards this by improving things in everything we do.
Fabric is the main element to a sofa. It is what we touch, feel and live with in our homes, so the kinder to you and the planet it is, the better.
As a result, we have carefully selected a diverse range of eco-friendly fabrics for those who would prefer to make a more sustainable fabric choice for their sofa. To see the collection, click here.
Many of these ranges are made with 100% natural, organic and sustainable materials such as cotton, linen, or wool. When combined with a wool-safe barrier cloth underneath, which is inherently fire retardant, this combination is 100% chemical free.
In the range, some fabrics have been woven with recycled yarns. These recycled yarns are typically discarded from the fashion industry and saved from landfill, or are made from PET which derive from recycled plastic bottles. Many of the processes used in producing these fabrics save valuable water and energy.
Some fabrics are inherently fire retardant, or have a halogen-free fire retardant back coating which are much kinder to the planet and do not contain harmful flame retardants.
Some fabrics also have a green easy clean finish, such as Teflon EcoElite, which is the World's first plant based textile repellent.
Teflon EcoElite™ - The World's first plant based textile repellent
Teflon EcoElite™ is a bio-based and non-fluorinated stain repellent technology that repels water and water-based stains. The finish can be applied to a variety of fabrics without impacting feel or breathability.
Teflon EcoElite™ finish is also up to three times more durable than other non-fluorinated, water-repellent finishes. Because many of its ingredients can be regrown and replaced over time, its production leaves a smaller environmental footprint.
DACRON® Quallofil® Blue is the eco-friendly choice for furniture cushions and is used in our polyester hollow fibre seat and back cushion interiors.
Quallofil® Blue is a new polyester fibre for sustainable sofa cushions. The filling fibre is made from 100% recycled bottles, of which 50% is Prevented Ocean PlasticTM collected from coastlines at risk of ocean plastic pollution. The Prevented Ocean PlasticTM programme is a global recycling initiative which helps tens of thousands of people around the world to earn their living, clean their coastlines and prevent ocean plastic.
Plastic waste is collected before it enters the oceans and rivers in regions that do not have efficient and formal waste or recycling systems. The collected plastic is then washed, crushed, and dried, becoming strictly controlled PET flakes. This is used by ADVANSA in a 50% blend as a valuable raw material in the manufacture of polyester filling fibres. ADVANSA fibres are GRS (Global Recycled Standard) independently certified and audited for traceability.
High technology Quallofil® Blue cushions will not only last a long time and maintain its original appearance, but by choosing this filling for your sofa cushions, you are also helping the planet at the same time!
Prevented Ocean Plastic™
Prevented Ocean Plastic is certified and fully traceable recycling that is collected from at risk coastlines for ocean plastic pollution.
Quallofil® Blue polyester filling fibre is made from 100% recycled bottles of which 50% is Prevented Ocean Plastic.
Frames are made from sustainable beech, or birch hardwood timber from managed European forests. Each delivery of timber is fully traceable to the forest and country it was harvested from and is fully compliant to UKTR.
Frames have glued, screwed and dowelled joints and the water based PVA glue we use in the construction of our frames is classified as not hazardous according to regulation (EC) 1272/2008.
Under the Covers
The materials we use underneath the covers are just as important as the main fabric we use to cover the sofa.
To insulate the springs and inside of arms, we use a fire retardant needlepunch cover. We also use this product as the dust cover, underneath of the sofa. This product has high tear, breaking and abrasion resistance and not only contains recycled material, it also is OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 certified that it has been tested for harmful substances and that the article is harmless for human health.
To further insulate the seat springs, we use a needled wool felt that is made from recycled material.
Recycling and Waste Management
Wherever possible, we try to minimise the amount of waste produced in the manufacturing of our sofas and send as little as possible to landfill. To achieve this, many of the surplus materials we use are recycled.
Wood offcuts produced in manufacturing our frames are saved and are now used to heat our frame workshop. In 2023, we replaced a gas powered heater with a brand-new wood burning heater. As a result, we have stopped sending any wood waste to landfill and have reduced our gas consumption at the same time. Wood shavings are also regularly collected by local horse stables, which ensures that this waste is reused, is helping local animals and is not sent to landfill.
Foam offcuts are sorted and sent back to our supplier to be recycled to form new reconstituted foams. Spray adhesive canisters are also returned to our supplier. Both actions prevent these items from entering landfill and are collected each time we receive a new delivery by the same vehicle, ensuring no extra journeys are made.
Surplus fabric and roll-ends are saved and become an integral part of our unique patchwork furniture range. To see our patchwork range, click here.
As a result of all of these actions, we have reduced the size of our general waste skip and the frequency it needs to be emptied.
We also sort and recycle packaging for materials supplied to us. Cardboard packaging is sorted, compacted and stored in a separate skip for recycling. Many of our fabric suppliers roll their fabrics on FSC certified cardboard tubes and have changed their outer packaging to LDPE 4 recyclable plastic. We are actively encouraging the rest of our suppliers to follow suit. Cardboard tubes are recycled and all plastic packaging we receive is sorted and disposed of responsibly.
We use recycled and recyclable low-density polyethylene furniture bags to package our sofas. These bags are made from 100% recycled plastic material, rather than virgin material and being LDPE 4, are fully recyclable too.
In some areas, these bags can be put in mixed kerbside collections along with other household recycled waste (please check with your local authority first). Alternatively, many supermarkets now have plastic recycling collection points and they can be conveniently disposed of responsibly when making your weekly food shop instead.
Sourcing of Materials and Suppliers
Wherever possible, we try to minimise our carbon footprint by sourcing the materials used in the manufacturing of our sofas as local as possible. We do not directly import any of our materials from outside of the UK.
Quallofil® Blue hollow fibre cushion fillings are manufactured in Long Eaton, less than two miles from our factory. Our feather cushion fillings are manufactured in Lincolnshire.
Our foams are manufactured by Carpenter in Glossop, Derbyshire and by Vitafoam in Middleton, Manchester.
Our component suppliers are based in Long Eaton, or the East Midlands.
Fabrics are sourced from UK wholesalers and we are also keen supporters of fabrics woven in Britain. Even much so, that we have created our own British-made fabric collection. To see the collection, click here.
Our hardwood timber is from managed European forests and is purchased from a UK timber merchant based in Alfreton, Derbyshire.
We require all suppliers to provide confirmation and where possible certification to ensure that ALL products supplied to us comply with REACH regulations. REACH is a European Union regulation concerning the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and restriction of Chemicals and relates to the manufacture of consumer products.
By identifying the dangers and managing the risks, REACH aims to provide a high level of protection of human health and the environment through controlling and monitoring the use of chemicals. REACH is an evolving regulation with regular developments to restrict new chemicals that have a negative impact on human health or the environment.
Re-covering an existing sofa with new fabric not only transforms the look and functionality of the piece it is also better for the environment to recycle furniture, rather than send it to landfill.
When you purchase from Long Eaton Sofas®, you can have peace of mind that in the future you will be able to have a 'new look' sofa without having to buy new again.
Our frames are built to last, as are the springs, so both can be reused. In most cases, the foam and fillings underneath the covers can be reused too, not only saving you money against buying new, but helping you to protect the planet at the same time. We retain all of our frame and cutting patterns and regularly reupholster items that customers have owned for over ten to twenty years. Typically, only the covering fabric and cushion interiors need to be replaced for new.
We only offer our reupholstery service on items we have previously made and cannot accept items made by other manufacturers.
Disposing of Old Sofas Responsibly
When purchasing new sofas from us, we highly recommend disposing of your old furniture responsibly to ensure it does not go to landfill, or is incinerated, both of which are harmful to the environment.
This can be done by using a company to collect and recycle it, or by donating it to charity where it can be reused:
Waste Nott Want Nott are a registered charity based close by to us in Nottingham that collect unwanted sofas within a 12 mile radius of their recycling facility in Attenborough (NG9 6AA). They guarantee that sofas and other items do not enter landfill and are recycled in accordance to the new POP's regulations. Some items with reuse, or resale value are donated to Operation Orphan and are either given to families through Forget-Me-Notts, or sold to generate vital funds for the charity. To find out more, or to arrange a collection, please click here to visit their website
For our nationwide customers, Clearabee are the UK’s largest in-house clearance company and are very experienced at collecting and recycling sofas. They offer a fixed-price service with 24/7 ordering available. In many cases, they can collect your sofa on the same day. To find our more, or to arrange a collection, please click here to visit their website.
The British Heart Foundation (BHF), can collect unwanted sofas from your home for free. The items donated are then sold in their furniture stores to help fund their lifesaving research. To find out more, or to arrange a collection, please click here to visit their website.
British Heart Foundation - Free furniture collection service
Book a free collection for your unwanted furniture items using their online booking form. They will then sell your items in their shops to raise money for heart research that will save lives.