Berkvens and sustainability
For Berkvens, sustainability is more than being green or saving the world, it means smart entrepreneurship and ensuring our continuity now and into the future.
To place an even great emphasis on this and to instil it in our day-to-day activities, Berkvens has embedded its sustainability policy in its own business plans and strategy.
We have chosen to focus on 2 SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) within our ‘sustainability policy’. Those are SDG 12 & 13 (Responsible consumption and production & climate action). This means that we are managing 2 transitions within our organisation:
- the transition from a linear economy into a circular economy
- the transition from fossil to sustainable
To give this more substance, we have set up a new SRP policy last year that includes 5 topics of focus over the coming years. This will take place in steps; ‘practice makes perfect’ as the saying goes.
In recent years, Berkvens has been aiming for a 10% reduction in CO2. In 2017, we invested in our own engine burner which is now allowing us to save more than 50% on gas consumption. In 2020, Berkvens will continue with its installation of solar panels in a large section of our production halls. The initial estimates show that we will be able to provide more than 1/3 of our own energy needs. Berkvens has also taken a step to achieve certification on the CO2 performance ladder in 2020. We will be entering on level 3 and our goal is to define our ambitions for the next steps to levels 4 & 5 by the end of 2020/beginning of 2021.
LED lighting in offices and factories
In 2019, the lighting in our factories was replaced with LED lighting. We had already done this at an earlier point for the office spaces in the head office. More specifically, this adjustment means that we save more than 250.000 kWh per year and more than 115.000 kg of CO2.
Berkvens is working towards continuously reducing its own waste flows with the aim of closing as many cycles as possible. This is focused on incoming and internal flows in particular. Outgoing flows are included in our ‘packaging policy’. In 2019, we set up our own waste coordination team as well as created and developed our own 0-measurement and kpi measurements. In 2020, our aim is to generate better insights into the flows and to use this as the basis for formulating a reduction target for 2025.
Berkvens has set up a new packaging policy with the following principles: Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. We are striving to avoid packaging wherever possible, to make reductions where packaging is needed, and to identify how we can reuse and/or recycle packaging (refuse, reduce, reuse, recyle). We currently have a dedicated trainee conducting research and we are still looking for a large national contractor who is willing to start a pilot programme with us. We also aim to develop a common way forward toward a new standard in (preferably) unpackaged doors. Last year, we switched to a 25% thinner film in our efforts to reduce packaging.
In order to integrate circular purchasing into our procurement processes, we have started training our procurement department in ‘circular and bio-based’ procurement. The aim is to first gain knowledge and experience with 2 small-scale projects/pilots in 2020. Our goal is to scale up the number of projects and products over the coming years.
The smart innovation behind a variety of cutting edge products is making the difference. Fitec, a product developed in-house, has replaced tropical hardwood in fire-resistant doors. Applying Topkant doubles the lifespan of products. This water-based paint used on our doors provides environmental resistance and is friendly to people and the environment.
And we are continuing to examine how we can extend the life of our products and improve the parts we use in order to create even better products for people and the environment. That is why we are currently working on reducing our CO2 emissions in our resins and testing formaldehyde-free resins.
Since 2019, Berkvens has started a partnership with Ecochain to map out the environmental impact of its products. We are achieving this by conducting LCAs (life cycle analyses) for all our products. As an organisation, we have included the LCA and reduction of the ECI (Environmental Cost Indicator) of our doors and window frames as a company KPI. In 2020, we will work together with our own suppliers (upstream in the chain) on creating and formulating more transparency, awareness and reduction targets. At the end of 2020, we aim to be able to publish our own LCAs.
First European producer with FSC® certified doors
Berkvens was the first European manufacturer of interior doors to bring an FSC® certified flat lacquered door onto the market. Nowadays, virtually the entire Berkvens product range/product portfolio carries an FSC® (mix) label. In addition, in 2018 we committed ourselves as a company to achieving STIP certification. This Dutch certificate means that all of our purchased raw timber materials are supplied from sustainably produced forests.
Lifespan and environmentally friendly products
Our doors are suitable for BREEAM and LEED projects at the highest levels. Installing interior doors and frames from Berkvens helps you contribute to the sustainability performance of your building.
Charging points and encouraging green transport
At Berkvens, there are multiple charging points for electric bicycles and electric/plug-in hybrid cars.
With our electric forklifts, A-label fleet and promotion and facilitation of ‘the new way of driving’, Berkvens is looking beyond its own locations. Measures such as returning packaging materials and using FSC® paper for stationary are also making a contribution here.