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HERMAN MILLER CASE

CRADLE TO CRADLE DESIGN AT HERMAN MILLER

Group 2I
Abhishek Agarwal
Mayank Gupta
Mikkilineni Sri Harsha
Pragya Patak
Rishab Kothari
Shanu Malik

INTRODUCTION

Herman Miller was one of the four leading furniture supplier providing furniture for seating,

systems furniture, filing and storage, desks & tables, etc.


Herman Miller has adopted triple-bottom-line approach of financial, environmental and

social responsibility performance and emerged as an environmental leader in the industry


"Perfect Vision" sustainability initiative includes zero landfill, zero hazardous waste

generation, zero water & air emissions from manufacturing, 100% green energy for power
needs, etc. by 2020
Environment Health & Safety group drafted a series of evolving Design for environment

guidelines for making decisions for product design and development

CRADLE TO CRADLE DESIGN PROTOCOL


Cradle to cradle approach focuses on making equally valuable products from the

components of a product at the end of its useful cycle.


It aims not only on minimizing toxic pollution, reducing natural resources waste but also

redesigning industrial process to avoid their generation.


Underlying Principles:
Eco-efficiency : aims at generating less toxic pollution and decrease the rate of depletion of natural

resources
Eco-effectiveness: the raw material used in product cycle is upcycled rather than just recycled.

Key elements include Biological and Technical Nutrients, Green-Yellow-Orange-Red list,

Disassembly, Recyclability and recycled content

STRATEGIES ADOPTED BY COMPANY


Started the Environmental Quality Action Team (EQAT) to set environmental direction and

priorities, and to measure outcome


The perfect vision includes zero landfill, zero hazardous waste generation, zero air and

water waste from the manufacture and 100 % green energy


It also includes minimizing the waste of production process, DfE Guideline and Cradle-to-

Cradle (C2C) design protocol


HM were using renewable energy sources and recyclable products for manufacturing which

was directly in line with the HMs mission


HM were processing towards environmental sustainable products which gives them a

competitive edge over other furniture manufactures in USA


They were focused on reuse, reduce and recycle capabilities of their products

PVC OR TPU? -REASONS TO CHOOSE ONE OF THEM


PVC is commonly used, quite cheap, long term durable, scratch resistant and consistent

with respect to the quality of arm-pad


But PVC is a dangerous material, which can be harmful for human health and environment

as well, Red chemical containing product and it violates C2C protocol since it releases
toxins
The raw material cost of TPU was twice that of PVC with same durability as PVC
But TPU is comparatively a safe technology, Mirra Chair will have the ability to get recycled

and there is no violation of environmental norms though there would be uncertainty with
the consistent quality of arm-pad
Though preferring TPU will increase the production cost but Herman Miller should move

towards phasing-out PVC and implement TPU in order to eliminate health and environment
risks. The Green Publicity for the chair will lead to consumer paying reasonable price and
thus the sustainable TPU implementation will become more profitable in longer run.

IMPLEMENTATION OF C2C PROTOCOL


Did a commendable job by appointing a senior advisory team comprising of

representatives from all departments to identify the best sustainability program


Cared little about money and resources; studied C2C protocol for 3 years prior to

implementation
Under the aegis of Herman Miller, the company fumed DFE team which showed their strong

commitment for the implementation of the C2C protocol


Brought implementation changes in all processes including engineering, supply chain

management, manufacturing and design


Took a serious stance with the suppliers ultimately convincing them to implement C2C;

demonstrated commitment yet again

THANK YOU