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How Chirk-based manufacturer Richard Burbidge is leading the way in the sustainable timber trade

Family-run business and leading manufacturer of timber products, Richard Burbidge, is providing a glimpse into its success. From the production process to recent sustainability initiatives, find out how this Chirk-based company is setting the standard within the timber industry.

As a sustainable manufacturer, the business has a long history of purchasing a large volume of FSC© and PEFC© certified materials to ensure the sourcing of wood comes from sustainably managed forests which encourage biodiversity, increase forestation and maximise CO2 absorption.

When taking on new suppliers, a number of audits are put in place to ensure all credentials are checked and that the few products without FSC© or PEFC© certifications comply with the UK’s Timber Regulations (UKTR). This allows the team to know exactly where their timber is coming from to guarantee high quality and reliable supply chains.

A large volume of the company’s softwood timber is purchased from Scandinavia, from FSC© certified forests, where the timber is felled and processed into lumber sections which are then dispatched for further processes at the Chirk factory in North Wales. Here, the timber is consciously used to form their best-selling ranges from to stairparts, decking and mouldings.

Scott Beddow, Procurement Manager, has worked for the business since 2002, where he joined as a Packing Operative for Richard Burbidge. Scott quickly moved up the ranks over the years and achieved his current role in February 2020, where he now heads up the purchasing and production planning departments.

Scott comments: “Here at Richard Burbidge, we continually look at the lifecycle of products and use agencies to gain insight on what the current trends are within the market. This way, we can tailor our product range accordingly along with new product development.”

“The business has always strived to be at the forefront of sustainability, especially during the production process. For many years we have had a biomass boiler which provides all of the heating to the factory and we have recently installed 2,600 solar panels on site to produce one third of our electricity needs. We also ensure our waste is kept to a minimum and utilise our wood waste into heating or have this collected for the hospitality and animal bedding market.”

It is this attention to the business’ carbon footprint that allows the business to stand out within the timber trade. 

Lee Burford, Director of Operations, comments: “Setting an example when it comes to sustainability and pioneering eco conscious initiatives is more important than ever within the manufacturing industry. Through our own sustainability report, we have also encouraged our suppliers to adopt best practice in sustainability and we will support them in adopting similar business processes that function with our environment in mind.”

View our Sustainability Report 2022

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