Seattle—Mohawk Group has just become the first flooring manufacturer to achieve Living Product Challenge Petal certification for the company’s new Lichen modular plank carpet system. The certification, which presents the most rigorous standard for sustainable manufacturing, was officially announced today at the International Living Future Institute’s (ILFI) annual unConference in Seattle.
“Our new Lichen collection demonstrates Mohawk’s commitment to ‘believe in better’ in the way that we create products, right down to their design’s most elementary aspects,” said George Bandy, vice president of sustainability at Mohawk Group. “This new product cultivates a unique connection point with Mother Nature as the first floor covering to be recognized with Living Product Challenge Petal certification. Mohawk’s sense of responsibility to product transparency encourages us daily to look for ways we can meaningfully set the bar higher for sustainability through innovative products with reduced environmental and social impacts.”
The ILFI’s Living Product Challenge is a product certification program, advocacy tool and philosophy that defines the most advanced measure of sustainability in product manufacturing today. The Challenge is comprised of seven performance categories called Petals: place, water, energy, health & happiness, materials, equity and beauty. Petal Recognition is given to products that satisfy the requirements in three categories of the Living Product Challenge, when at least one is water, energy or materials. Lichen met the place, water, and health & happiness Petals.
“Mohawk has significantly raised the bar with their new LPC certified Lichen Collection by launching a product that is 3rd party verified to be non-toxic and net positive for water through an incredible partnership with Morehouse college to create water Handprints,” said James Connelly, living product challenge director for ILFI. “The product is a perfect marriage of sustainability and design, and is a concrete example of how companies can create positive change in the world through the Living Product Challenge.”
Mohawk Group commissioned Jason F. McLennan, of McLennan Design and founder of the Living Product Challenge, to design the Lichen collection. Inspired by the idea of “Nature’s Carpet,” the design team looked at natural assemblages of rich multi-hued, multi-textured lichens from extreme climates as the foundation for the collection. Just as lichens play a regenerative role in their ecosystem, the Lichen collection gives more resources back to the environment than it uses during its entire life cycle.
“Lichen isn’t a singular, isolated accomplishment for our talented design team, but a sign of more offerings on the way,” said Jackie Dettmar, vice president of product design and development for Mohawk Group. “Lichen has been a strategic opportunity to introspectively look at different ways we can have a net positive impact on people and the environment, leaving a ‘handprint’ as we seek to touch the built environment like never before.”