Q&A with Paul McManus, Head of Global Product Compliance at Havwoods

Design Insider is committed to bringing our readers the latest on Sustainability. Our focus over the past month has been on Sustainable Materials, and we’ve had a fantastic response from brands across the sector, with some fascinating conversations. We had the absolute pleasure of speaking with Paul McManus, Head of Global Product Compliance, exploring Havwoods’ approach to sustainability, discussing the development of HavSeal™, and looking at some top tips on how you can source materials sustainably. 

[Find out more about Havwoods]

Can you introduce yourself to our readers, tell us a bit about what you do at Havwoods.

My name is Paul McManus and I’m responsible for assuring that Havwoods products are compliant in every market that we operate. I work with our suppliers to ensure that all of our timber is responsibly and sustainably sourced. Additionally, I work closely with our product development team to make sure that new products are tested in line with each regions regulations, and that the products are market ready and fit for purpose.

What is the brands’ approach on sourcing eco-friendly materials?

 Ensuring that we source materials from sustainably responsible sources has never been as important as it is today and as a brand, we’re passionate about sourcing eco-friendly materials and being kind to our environment.

At Havwoods, we only source wood flooring from ethically and sustainably managed forests working with reputable timber companies – many of these products are also FSC® or PEFC accredited in addition to meeting our own seal of approval, HavSeal™. This is an additional measure we’ve taken as a brand to ensure sustainable and responsible procurement within the supply chain.

How do you ensure sustainability through manufacturing?

To ensure sustainability through manufacturing we require an independent certification to verify our sources of timber; this certification is also available to our clients so that they can be assured that they’re receiving sustainably sourced timber.

We follow strict processes on this and work closely with all of our suppliers to make sure they are adhering to this.

What would be your top 3/5 tips on sustainable sourcing?

  1. Firstly, my top tip would be to always do your research. Ask around and speak to others working in the same industry who may from experience be able to recommend certain suppliers.
  2. Don’t compromise. Make sure you’re working with manufacturers or suppliers who share the same beliefs as you and can prove they are working with sustainably-sourced materials.
  3. Benchmark against well-recognised accreditations or certifications, as these will help to inform your final decision.

Can you tell us about HavSeal? What encouraged Havwoods to create this?

As the market for eco-friendly products increases, we wanted to add our very own stamp of approval on certain products across the Havwoods portfolio. HavSeal™ enhances the profile of each product, providing our clients and customers with more information on the eco-credentials of each plank, board or block.

HavSeal™ is awarded to those products that exceed the already high standards needed to ensure entry into the Havwoods wood flooring portfolio, with both Green or Gold options available depending on eco-efficiency.

The Green Seal award is given to the products that offer extra international accreditation, these products are often identified as coming from sources that offer higher standards of energy use and waste generation.

The Gold Seal is awarded to products coming from mills that show a dedicated commitment and proactive approach to sustainability – such as reusable heating for local communities, the powering of wind turbines or financing the re-introduction of animals into the forest areas.

Are there any future plans to further address sustainability?

For all of us at Havwoods, sustainability is a matter of extreme importance and it affects everything that we do. We are continuously taking new steps to improve and educate ourselves within this area and will adapt and evolve as new developments begin to emerge.

For more information about our eco-friendly products, please visit: https://www.havwoods.com/uk/eco-friendly-products/ or contact us on 01524 737000.

Contact Havwoods through BCFA Product Finder

The BCFA Product Finder is a unique search engine created especially for interior designers to source contract furnishing companies. Utilising this platform will support your findings for upcoming projects, with over 200 members profiles showcasing the latest product launches, new materials available, industry news, and design trends.


About Phoebe Train

Phoebe is a Marketing and Events Executive, who joined the BCFA as an English graduate in 2021. Working closely with designers and BCFA members, Phoebe has published an array of content for Design Insider.
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