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2015 Eco-Leaders


Posted by Alan Naditz

Aug 29, 2018 10:19:07 AM

When it comes to natural wood flooring, this company sets a gold standard.

mafi has specialized in sustainable practices for manufacturing wood for more than 35 years, serving residential, commercial, hospitality and health care industries. The company delivers to more than 55 countries worldwide by using local sales partners that sell directly through architect and designer specifications.

EcoLeaders mafi

mafi’s production facilities are zero waste, utilizing all facets of a wood log during creation of its flooring.

For wood flooring maker mafi, sustainability starts at home. The company’s primary product comes with a lot of “no”—no chemicals during production, no out-of-area wood sources, no long-term damage to area forests. But one restriction stands out: no finishes on mafi flooring.

According to company officials, mafi wood is designed to be left open and without finishes. What this does is filter the air; water and wood work to remove toxins in the air during the drying process. The flooring can withstand washing with hot water and soap, but polyurethane or other hard surface finishes can’t be used, because they would trap the water in the wood below that finish.

“Think of a cutting board. It cleans with only water and soap and we eat off of it every day,” says Walter Lourie, mafi’s technical sales manager. “Our floors are working the same way. Every day, we take toxins from the built environment. Wood also works to remove electronic smog from our cell phones and computers.”

Several scientific studies also indicate that wood relaxes our senses by doing nothing more than smelling the fragrance, Lourie says. Once a hard surface or coating is placed on wood, it stops that action. “mafi has never used chemicals or hard surfaces for any product in over 100 years,” he notes. “Allowing wood to remain natural helps everyone around it.” 

They’re an Eco-Leader because...

  • mafi recently completed a program that recycles all of its waste from production into pellets that heat its buildings and wood-drying facilities.
    Its facilities are zero waste, all products are local and no chemicals are used during production.
  • The company’s floors are produced from trees grown in a local forest, and it plants a new tree for every one it harvests.
  • mafi has been certified for low-emitting materials and passed the California air quality test requirements. mafi is Declare labeled Red List Free from the International Living Future Institute.
  • It won the Global Energy Award in 2011. It was selected as the floor provider for Delos’ New York headquarters; Delos is a leader in sustainable design consultation.

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