ONE OF THE MANY PROGRAMS THAT
FALL UNDER THE INTERNATIONAL
LIVING FUTURE INSTITUTE, the Living
Product Challenge incites manufacturers to develop
products that are healthy and inspirational,
improve end-users’ quality of life, and give back
to the environment as well. It’s no small dare and is
fast becoming a driving force in the design industry’s
awakening to the effect of building products on the
planet and the people who inhabit it.
The challenge examines 20 overall imperatives,
organized into seven performance areas (Petals),
to determine whether a product will become
“Petal Certified.” The Living Product Challenge
considers place, water, energy, health and happiness,
materials, equity, and beauty when determining if
a product will earn certification. The philosophy
behind the challenge is that products should give
more than they take. It encourages the creation of
products and practices that are healthy and free
of toxins, socially responsible and respectful of the
rights of workers, and net positive and beneficial
to both people and the environment. Shown here
are just a few examples of products that have
risen to the challenge.
For insight from International Living Future
Institute Creator and Board Chair Jason F. McLennan,
see “ICONic Profile,” page 56.
1. SHANNON SPECIALTY FLOORS, TEKNOFLOR
NATURESCAPES HPD. Manufactured in Detmold,
Germany, and with U.S. headquarters in Milwaukee, TEKNOFLOR
Naturescapes HPD is an organic sheet good made with ecuran,
an organically derived polyurethane composite material processed
from plant-based oils and naturally occurring minerals. The product
has a life expectancy of 12 years in commercial settings and 20 years
in residential settings, and offers a take-back program as an option
at the end of the product’s life. Imperatives Achieved: 16.
Petals Met: Place, Health & Happiness, Materials, Equity.
2. INDUSTRIAL LOUVERS, INC., CUSTOM ALUMINUM
SUNSHADES WITH FLUROPON PURE KYNAR FINISH.
Industrial Louvers’ custom sunshade products help reduce energy
consumption and increase occupant comfort, all while adding
architectural interest to a building. Manufactured in Delano,
Minnesota, the product has a life expectancy of 30 years and
is fully recyclable. Imperatives Achieved: 19. Petals Met: Place,
Water, Health & Happiness, Materials, Beauty, Equity.
3. CROSSVILLE, INC., RETRO ACTIVE 2.0. The Retro
Active 2.0 tile line is suitable for any indoor application, as well
as exterior covered walls. The product, which draws color inspiration
from nature, has a life expectancy of 60 years and is salvageable and
reusable in its entirety. With manufacturing facilities in Crossville,
Tennessee, the company recycles more tile material annually than it
produces. Imperatives Achieved: 14. Petals Met: Place, Water, Beauty.
4. PLANT SOLUTIONS, MOSSWALLART. Manufactured in
Scottsdale, Arizona, using 100 percent real mosses, lichens, natural
woods, and organic features, each hand-crafted Moss WallArt creation
is an exercise in biophilic design. The products act to absorb sound,
have a life expectancy of 15-plus years, and are salvageable and
reusable in their entirety. Imperatives Achieved: 14. Petals Met: Place,