Inexpensive ready-to-assemble furniture is becoming more popular and increasingly available. But, the clamor for less expensive home goods has led many to wonder if “fast furniture” is bad for the environment.
Fast-furniture retailers such as Target and IKEA often use cheaper materials to make its furniture goods. And, consumers tend to discard these goods sooner as they are less durable and lose resale value quicker than higher-quality pieces.
Others argue ways sellers keep costs down – such as flat packing – make a case for the environment’s good. Fast-furniture companies are also introducing rental models to reduce the life-cycle environmental impacts of its products.
Brady Family Chair in Operations Management and faculty director at the Ray C. Anderson Center for Sustainable Business at Scheller College of Business Beril Toktay weighed in on the debate in a recent interview. “Getting intentional about more durable designs, easy disassembly and having a plan for reusing or recycling materials once they make it back would be a sustainable way for companies to approach rentals,” she said.
Read ‘Is Your Ikea Habit Bad For The Environment?’ on the Rewire website.