Monday, April 19, 2010

Wood is wonderful!

I love trees! Why you might ask? Not only because they provide oxygen for us to breathe, beautiful displays of colors and a place for those cute little birds to live - they provide a renewable resource for us to use. This renewable resource is also sustainable (able to continue on forever) provided we follow good forest management practices which allow for the growth and harvest of trees in a way that doesn't degrade the forest resource as a whole.

Wood is also a wonderful material because when we are finished using it - more often than not, it's easier to return to nature than other materials such as plastic, metal or a combination of all three.

Here are some of my favorite recent picks of products made from wood that I think families going green might like....
The timbur Rattle - Each rattle is made in the USA by hand by timbur, constructed of all natural wood, filled with natural shell beads and finished with a non-toxic blend of natural oils and wax.  For sale here (USA).  I emailed with timbur's owner, Ezra and this is what he had to say about his wood sources:

"At timbur we take sustainability and ecologic responsibility very seriously and go to extended lengths to source our wood from lumber suppliers that share our values."

They are continuing to look for a secure source of FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) wood - currently the gold standard for the wood industry and it sounds like they have a good lead so stay tuned!

One of things that I HATE to throw away is my toothbrush - not because I'm addicted to brushing my teeth but because you cannot recycle them (that is if you use plastic toothbrushes).  So, here is a great wooden option. The picture showed here is the model for Toddlers but they make adult versions too!

•Toothbrush handles made from sustainable beechwood - safe to chew too!
•100% biodegradable
•Pure, natural bristles, medically safe, hygenically treated pig bristle
•More gentle and safer on your child's gums than plastic bristles 
Link to buy this product (UK)

Concerned about BPA in plastic kids toys - I LOVE this and no worries about any kinds of chemicals getting into your little one's skin/body.  This product is also made with FSC certified wood.  I'll take a tomato melt to go please!  For sale at Ecotoys (Australia).

If you are new to "FSC" certified wood here is some further info for you:

FSC is an independent, non-governmental, not-for-profit organization established to promote the responsible management of the world’s forests.

Established in 1993 as a response to concerns over global deforestation, FSC is widely regarded as one of the most important initiatives of the last decade to promote responsible forest management worldwide. 

FSC is a certification system that provides internationally recognized standard-setting, trademark assurance and accreditation services to companies, organizations, and communities interested in responsible forestry.

The FSC label provides a credible link between responsible production and consumption of forest products, enabling consumers and businesses to make purchasing decisions that benefit people and the environment as well as providing ongoing business value. 

FSC is nationally represented in more than 50 countries around the world.

FSC USA - use this link to search their product database
FSC Australia - has link to search for FSC certified products

Tracy Lydiatt - B.Sc, M.Sc
The Green Families Guru

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