Shaw among first to garner Cradle to Cradle Certification via new institute

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Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute Awards First Cradle to Cradle Product Certifications to Shaw Industries

“We are proud that the flagship Cradle to Cradle certified flooring product has come full circle and is now among the first products in the world to receive certification via the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute’s new certification process."

The new not-for-profit Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute has awarded Cradle to Cradle Silver certification to the company’s EcoWorx® group of carpet products, including more than 125 product collections and the components: Eco Solution Q® Fiber, Solution Q Extreme™ Nylon Fiber, EcoWorx® Tile Backing, EcoWorx® Broadloom Backing, LokDots Installation System, Shaw Industries Group, Inc. has announced.

The products are among the first in the world to achieve certification through the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute, which independently operates and audits the certification process. Based in San Francisco, California, the Institute was formed in March 2010 by William McDonough and Michael Braungart. The Institute’s objective is to make the rigorous Cradle to Cradle product certification program (originally founded in 2005 by McDonough and Braungart) more accessible and available to a larger public.

In 2005, Shaw Industries became the first flooring company in the world to introduce fully certified Cradle to Cradle flooring products. Today, nearly 75 percent of the company’s sales come from Cradle to Cradle certified product, including residential and commercial carpet, carpet tile, rugs, and hardwood. In addition, the company recently introduced LokDots™, the world’s first Silver level Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM installation system, for use with the company’s EcoWorx carpet tile.

According to Shaw Vice President of Sustainability Paul Murray, certifying EcoWorx through the new Cradle to Cradle Institute process is a fitting next step for the company that pioneered flooring designed according to Cradle to Cradle principles.

“A dedication to Cradle to Cradle principles is an integral part of our commitment to Sustainability through Innovation – the Shaw Green Edge,” Murray said. “Our introduction of EcoWorx carpet tile with Eco Solution Q fiber more than a decade ago changed the definition of sustainable flooring for our industry. Becoming the first flooring manufacturer in the world to earn Cradle to Cradle certification for these products, and subsequently embracing Cradle to Cradle principles across the spectrum of product design, manufacturing, reclamation and reuse continues to help us push the envelope of innovation for both our organization and our industry.”

“We are proud that the flagship Cradle to Cradle certified flooring product has come full circle and is now among the first products in the world to receive certification via the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute’s new certification process,” Murray added.

As the new manager of the Cradle to Cradle certification program, the Institute works with leaders from academia, the NGO environmental community, government, and industry to further Cradle to Cradle as a comprehensive quality rating system for the assessment and continuous improvement of products based on five categories:

  •     Safe and appropriately sourced materials
  •     Material reutilization
  •     Renewable energy
  •     Water quality
  •     Social responsibility

Products that meet the criteria of this rating system receive the Cradle to Cradle certified mark. To date, more than 90 companies worldwide have engaged in the Cradle to Cradle certification process through McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry (MBDC), working with assessors MBDC in the United States, and the Environmental Protection Encouragement Agency (EPEA) in Germany.

“From the world’s first Cradle to Cradle designed flooring products to their continued development of new Cradle to Cradle products and collections, Shaw’s commitment to sustainability through innovation is one that clearly embraces – and integrates – the tenets of Cradle to Cradle design through every aspect of their business,” said designer and architect William McDonough. Mr. McDonough and Dr. Michael Braungart co-authored the book Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things, now a seminal text within the sustainable design and business movement.

In 2010, after more than two decades working with companies like Shaw Industries, McDonough and Braungart recognized the desire of individuals and organizations all over the world to participate in the product certification protocol and the opportunity to scale the protocol in a way that will make it globally available. As such, the pair gifted exclusive license to the certification system and methodology to the public through the creation of the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute – positioning the non-profit to serve as an agency of change through publicly available resources and information.

Shaw plans to certify all its Cradle to Cradle products through the Institute from this point forward.

About Shaw Industries Group, Inc.
Shaw Industries Group, Inc., a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., is the world’s largest carpet manufacturer and a leading floorcovering provider with more than $4 billion in annual sales and approximately 24,000 associates worldwide. Headquartered in Dalton, Georgia, the company manufactures and distributes carpeting, rugs, hardwood, laminate and ceramic tile for residential and commercial applications worldwide. A recognized leader in environmental stewardship, Shaw has implemented hundreds of sustainability initiatives and Cradle to Cradle design solutions, collectively termed the Shaw Green Edge. For more information, visit

Cradle to Cradle® and C2C® are registered trademarks of McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry, LLC.

Cradle to Cradle CertifiedCM and Certified Cradle to CradleCM are licensed to the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute.


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