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AHFA Sustainability Conference 2023 Recap

05
Sep

The Guilford Technical Community College Conference Center buzzed with activity from August 9th to 10th, 2023, as it hosted the AHFA Sustaining a BOLD Compliance Culture Conference. 

Organized by the American Home Furnishings Alliance (AHFA), this event gathered industry leaders, including our team from Global Registration Services and American Law Label, as exhibitors, attendees, and engaged participants. 

Notably, Deven Wisner, our Vice President, played a pivotal role as a primary speaker and host of two tabletop discussions that added depth to the conference's deliberations.

Day 1 Highlights - August 9th

The conference's inaugural day commenced with participant registration, complemented by coffee and morning snacks provided by Insight Quality Services. The day was rich with enlightening sessions.

Session 1 - TSCA: The Looming Deadline for Fabricators 

Joel Oser and Chris Battin from Benchmark International, Eugene, Oregon, provided a comprehensive update on the TSCA Title VI testing and certification requirements for fabricators of laminated products.

Session 2 - What You Need to Know about the Canadian Formaldehyde Emission Regulation

Andy O'Hare, President of Composite Panel Association, Leesburg, Virginia, illuminated the critical aspects of the Canadian Formaldehyde Emission Regulation.

Session 3 - When CPSC Activity Spills Into the Courtroom

Joseph Mohorovic, Senior Managing Consultant at Engineering Systems Inc., Aurora, Illinois, delved into the intersection of CPSC activities and legal proceedings.

Session 4 - CPSC Update: What’s Next on the Agency’s Agenda

Matthew Howsare, Partner at Cooley LLP, Washington, D.C., shared insights on CPSC's approach to various industry-related matters.

Session 5 - F2057-23 Deconstructed

Richard Rosati, Vice President of Bureau Veritas Consumer Products Inc., Buffalo, New York, delved into the new federal safety standard for clothing storage furniture.

Session 6 - New Specifications for Tip Restraint Devices

Scott Buehrer, President of B. Walter & Co., Wabash, Indiana, provided updates on the ASTM International voluntary standard for tip restraint devices.

Session 7 - Stability Verified 2.0

Brayden West, Senior Key Accounts Executive at UL Solutions, Grand Rapids, Michigan, discussed the implications of the new 16 CFR 1621 and the UL Solutions Stability Verified program.

The day wrapped up with a reception in the Expo Hall sponsored by Benchmark International.

Day 2 Highlights - August 10th

The conference's momentum carried on into the second day, with a series of engaging sessions.

Session 1 - EU Regulatory Update

Ed Turtle, Associate at Cooley LLP, shared insights into EU consumer product regulations affecting home furnishings.

Session 2 - States Accelerating PFAS Regulations

Michael Sullivan, Partner at Womble Bond Dickinson, Atlanta, highlighted regulatory activities regarding "forever chemicals" in various states.

Session 3 - EPA’s Current Stance on PFAS

William Troutman, Partner at Norton Rose Fulbright, Los Angeles, reviewed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's approach to PFAS substances.

Session 4 - Harnessing Technology to Track Chemical Compliance

Neil Smith and Dr. Bruce Jarnot from Assent explored ways to manage product compliance and sustainability through technology.

Session 5 - It’s All About the Label

Deven Wisner, Vice President of Global Registration Services, Tucson, Arizona, delved into existing law label requirements and upcoming changes.

Session 6 - AHFA Member Sustainability Best Practices

Felicia Steinberg from City Furniture and Randy Rankin from Eurofins shared insights on sustainable practices.

Session 7 - ESG: It’s Not Just For Public Companies

Chris Ashworth, Global Director of Sales at UL Solutions, Annapolis, Maryland, discussed the benefits of environmental and social governance programs for companies of all sizes.

The event concluded with a closing address by Bill Perdue from AHFA.

Overall Experience and Conclusion

The AHFA Sustainability Conference 2023 facilitated productive discussions, networking, and a deeper appreciation for sustainability within the home furnishings sector. With our presence as exhibitors and Deven Wisner's active involvement as a primary speaker, the event's success was significantly enhanced. 

Together, we continue to drive the journey toward a more sustainable and innovative future for the consumer landscape.

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