Used Kitchen Exchange (UKE) has become the first kitchen company in the world to achieve the B Corp certification, meeting social and environmental standards outside of shareholder profit.
According to the ex-display and used kitchen retailer, it is “a notable step and signals a shift towards greater accountability and transparency in the sector”.
The B Corp certification addresses the entirety of a business’ operations and covers five key impact areas of Governance, Workers, Community, Environment and Customers.
Applicants are required to provide evidence of socially and environmentally responsible practices relating to energy supplies, waste and water use, worker compensation, diversity and corporate transparency.
To complete the certification, the privately-owned UK company will legally embed their commitment to purpose beyond profit.
UKE is now part of a community of over 3,800 businesses globally who have certified as B Corps and in the UK includes 450 well-known brands such as The Guardian, Innocent, Patagonia, The Body Shop, and Abel & Cole.
Speaking about the certification founder of UKE Helen Lord commented: “Being awarded B Corp certification is without a doubt UKE’s most meaningful business achievement to date and further justifies our place as the sustainability partner of choice to the KBB Sector.
“Balancing profit and planet has always been at the very heart of what we do, and to have received global recognition for this is incredible.
“Not only do we take responsibility for our impact on the world around us, our vision from the outset has been to support and promote sustainability within our industry.
“To this end we have invested heavily in providing our partner showrooms and manufacturers with verifiable and quantifiable environmental savings when selling a new kitchen.
“With over 11 million kgs of carbon saved so far and new initiatives in the pipeline, we cannot wait to see what can be achieved moving forward.”
Executive director of B Lab UK Chris Turner said: “We are delighted to welcome UKE, the first ever kitchen company to the B Corp community. This is an exciting moment because they have an opportunity to lead the way within their industry.
“We and the rest of the B Corp community are really pleased to support UKE in paving the way for a new way of doing things”.
UKE was recently awarded a Government grant to expand growth and help create 180 local jobs over the next five years.