The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Fairlie firm crafts new sustainability model

North Ayrshire furniture producer, Fairlie Furniture, which designs and crafts handmade wooden pieces, has branched out by installing two biomass boilers at its wood shop and showroom.

[Pictured: Fairlie Furniture owner Kenny Donaldson.]

The firm will be making better use of its big by-product – wood – while becoming more sustainable, thanks to expert advice from Resource Efficient Scotland, a programme of Scottish Government-funded Zero Waste Scotland. 

The business decided to install the new boiler system in order to heat its premises more efficiently, keep the all-important furniture products at the correct temperature, and put its waste cuts of wood to good use. 

Resource Efficient Scotland provides the public, private and third sectors with free support and advice to help them to reduce costs by using their energy, water and raw materials more efficiently. Businesses and organisations can benefit from a suite of online tools as well as a dedicated advice phoneline designed to provide support in all areas of sustainability. 

Fairlie Furniture owner Kenny Donaldson says: “The Resource Efficient Scotland service was really easy and helpful. They came out to see us and provided lots of great recommendations on how we could become more environmentally friendly and save money doing so.

“They also helped us to secure a low interest loan to install two biomass boilers – one in our wood shop and one in the mains show room. These boilers were up and running by December 2014 and all of our unused pieces of wood are used as fuel. Post-installation we were approved for a Renewable Heat Incentive which effectively covers our five-year loan repayment. 

“In the long term, the boilers will benefit the business financially but ultimately, it was a good decision for us and we strive to be more sustainable. It also means none of our wood goes to waste and any cuts we need to discard just get thrown in the boilers to heat the buildings.” 

Iain Gulland, Chief Executive of Zero Waste Scotland, the programme which operates Resource Efficient Scotland, said: “It’s always great to see local businesses making a resource efficient change for the better and I am pleased to see that Fairlie Furniture is now able to put its waste wood product to good use.

“I would encourage any business, large or small, that is keen to explore opportunities to become more sustainable to contact the team at Resource Efficient Scotland and discuss what options might be available to them.” 

Through Resource Efficient Scotland there is also an option for businesses and organisations to sign up to the Resource Efficiency Pledge, which aims to help Scotland’s businesses to save money by using energy, water and raw materials more efficiently, demonstrating their commitment to the environment at the same time. 

Resource Efficient Scotland works with each individual business to identify the best pledge actions for them and to provide support to help achieve them.  Pledge actions can range from setting up a green team to improving their recycling rates. Businesses can also take advantage of the Savings Finder, an online resource efficiency tool which helps businesses to target their best savings opportunities.

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