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Corporate Social Responsibility: Our Impact by the Numbers

April 27, 2023
  • Sustainability

Explore our impact by the numbers to see the strides we made in 2022 toward sustainable practices and community connection.



At KI, sustainability is at the core of what we do. We’re constantly evaluating how to raise the bar for product design and manufacturing practices, minimize our impact on the environment, and support our employees, their families, and our local and global communities.

In recognition of Earth Month, we’re excited to release our latest annual corporate social responsibility report. Take a look at our impact by the numbers below!

Highlights: Our 2022 Social Responsibility Impact by the Numbers 

17%

decrease in greenhouse gas emissions

13.7M

pounds of material diverted from landfills

36%

of solar energy redirected to power grid for reuse

146

products certified for sustainability 

3,665

trees planted in eight countries

$144K

donated to community organizations

 

17% Decrease in Greenhouse Gas Emissions

To mitigate the impacts of climate change, we established a new goal last year to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by the end of 2023 compared to our 2017 levels. We’re proud to say that we’re well on our way. Throughout 2022, we reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 17% and reduced our energy consumption by 22.6%. To achieve our goal by the end of 2023, we have committed ourselves to further investing in initiatives that promote a more sustainable future.

Our greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption levels have steadily decreased since our baseline year. 


13.7M Pounds of Material Diverted From Landfills

In 2022, we diverted 13.7 million pounds of material from our manufacturing facilities from going to landfills. We also directed 3.1 million pounds of that material to recycling centers. Compared to the year prior, this is a 40% increase in overall waste reduction.

Looking ahead, we aim to transition to 100% recyclable packaging to reduce our landfill contribution even further.

We are committed to reducing packaging materials by finding alternative methods to safely ship and receive products.


36% of Solar Energy Redirected to Power Grid

Our corporate design and development center has nearly 500 solar panels covering more than 22,000 square feet of rooftop space. Last year, the renewable energy gathered by our solar panel system offset all electrical usage at the design and development center and sent 36% of that energy back to the grid to be used elsewhere.

Our design and development center is home to one of the largest solar photovoltaic (PV) systems in Northeast Wisconsin.


146 Products Certified for Sustainability

LEVEL Logo.jpg

In 2022, KI achieved the most rigorous tier of LEVEL certifications for 146 product families. The LEVEL certification process is completed by a third-party certifier that evaluates products against criteria laid out by BIFMA in accordance with ANSI procedures, including whether a product is sourced and manufactured in an environmentally-conscious and socially-responsible manner. Our LEVEL-certified products allow architects, designers, and customers to easily identify the most sustainable furniture in our product portfolio.

To view sustainability certifications for our products, such as these LimeLite HD stools, use our new eco-friendly furniture filter.

Additionally, we design 100% of our products with closed-loop design thinking, where we use components that are easy to disassemble, repair, and recycle at the end of the product's life. We're constantly working to improve our closed-loop product design, including optimizing the chemical makeup of materials, to ensure our products last for generations and can be recycled when they're no longer usable.

Watch the video below to hear from our industrial design team and learn how they approach closed-loop design thinking to help KI deliver value at every step of the product lifecycle.

VIDEO KI's Approach to Closed-Loop Product Design 


3,665 Trees Planted in Eight Countries

Back in 2017, we partnered with PrintReleaf to track paper consumption at our corporate headquarters and replant trees based on our usage. So far, we’ve planted more than 3,600 trees in forests that need it most around the world, including more than 600 trees last year alone. Through PrintReleaf, we’ve planted trees in California, Canada, Ireland, Dominican Republic, Brazil, India, Mexico, and Madagascar.

As we print, trees are replanted in forests that need it most around the world (courtesy of PrintReleaf). 


$144,000 Donated to Community Organizations

Giving back to those within our community is at the heart of how we do business. Last year, we donated $144,000 to local organizations such as:

  • Bellin Run, an annual 10K race here in Green Bay with thousands of participants, with the mission of promoting health and well-being for people of all ages.
  • Green Bay Chamber Fund, supporting the economic development of our community through the Greater Green Bay Chamber.
  • Literacy Green Bay, a non-profit that helps adults and families build reading, writing, math, English language, and workforce skills.
  • University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s Phoenix Fund, which provides financial support to UW-Green Bay students experiencing financial hardship.

We proudly support Literacy Green Bay as a Classroom Sponsor, which offers classroom space for more than 300 students who attend English Language Learning classes as well as 60 students attending classes in the areas of math skills, citizenship examinations, and GED acquisition.

We continue to support local chapters of national organizations, including the American Cancer Society, Big Brothers Big Sisters, United Way, and the YMCA.

We also prioritize making in-kind donations of furniture in the spirit of Changing Lives One Chair at a Time, an initiative that recognizes our impact as a company extends far beyond the products we make. Last holiday season, for instance, we donated 72 beds to local community shelters. In addition, we recently donated chairs to a local company that fundraised more than $800,000 for humanitarian aid in Ukraine.

By donating our time and resources to the community, we extend KI's corporate stewardship beyond our four walls.


Evolving Today for a Better Tomorrow

Although we’re proud of the steps we’ve taken to improve our corporate social responsibility efforts, we’re certainly not finished. We constantly look for ways to grow our sustainable processes and community support.

Learn more about our dedicated corporate stewardship and sustainability efforts in our full 2022 Social Responsibility Report below.

Social Rep Crop.JPG

 Download Full Report

by Robin Kunstmann  Sustainability Manager

Experienced and passionate about all things sustainability and the built environment, Robin Kunstmann provides leadership and management oversight in developing, implementing, and driving product stewardship and sustainability initiatives. She implements long-range planning solutions to reduce KI’s greenhouse gas emissions and energy while helping our customers achieve their carbon reduction efforts. Robin serves as a member of BIFMA Sustainability Committee, BIFMA Government Affairs, BIFMA Leadership, Association of Contract Textiles (ACT) Sustainability Work Group, and Manufacturing Committee of Health Product Declaration Collaborative (HPDC). She also serves as the Vice Chair of the Chemical Committee and is a BIFMA Faculty Trainer, conducting CEUs approved by IDCEC, AIA, HSW and GBCI. Robin is WELL Accredited (WELL AP) through the International Well Building Institute, Living Future Accredited (LFA) through the International Living Future Institute, and accredited in LEED Building Design & Construction (LEED BD+C) through the United States Green Building Council. Robin’s background is in Environmental Science and Chemistry from Southern New Hampshire University.

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