As a manufacturer of quartz surfacing since 1987, Caesarstone has continually evolved to output high-quality products to be used in diverse design applications. Stone World had the opportunity to ask Elizabeth Margles, vice president of Caesarstone North America, some questions about the company’s commitment to the environment and its future plans for expansion and new product introductions.
SW: I understand that Caesarstone feels very strongly about its commitment to the environment. Please tell us a little about how this came about. What are some of the measures the company has taken to uphold to this standard?
EM: Minimizing the company’s impact on the environment is a top managerial priority at Caesarstone. The company aims to involve all employees and departments to assure its sustainability leadership. Caesarstone designs and produces durable low-maintenance products that support healthier environments and better use of material resources. The manufacturer is committed to resource efficiency in our production processes, including raw material management, energy savings, water recycling, recycled packaging and efficient use of auxiliary materials.
Caesarstone uses a Regeneration Thermal Oxidizer (RTO) system to dispose of harmful gases in all its production plants, which has contributed significantly to energy savings at these sites. Some of the company’s surface products are made with recycled materials, which reduce the demand for primary raw materials and diverts waste from landfill.
Caesarstone provides a safe, clean working environment by operating air purification systems in the plant and its surroundings and collecting dust throughout the manufacturing process. Raw materials are stored in a safe clean environment on sealed pallets to prevent leakage of ground-polluting substances.
Caesarstone has also launched a free “Master of Stone” education program accessible to all industry professionals worldwide. It’s specifically helpful for individuals who work in the fabrication of engineered quartz stone and who may be exposed to silica dust. The program teaches safety rules and best practices for working with engineered stone.
SW: Caesarstone meets the exacting American Greenguard standards; been endorsed by the National Health and Safety Foundation (NSF); has been approved on the mindful MATERIALS library; and has received the Health Product Declaration certificate (HPD). Please explain to our readers what this means and how Caesarstone achieved these recognitions.
EM: These are just a few of the environmental certifications Caesarstone is proud to hold because of the company’s commitment to creating durable low-maintenance products that support healthier environments and better use of natural resources.
Caesarstone quartz surfaces meet stringent product emissions standards and have very little impact on indoor air quality. All Caesarstone quartz products are independently certified by the Greenguard Certification, which is part of UL Environment, a business unit of UL (Underwriters Laboratories), as low-emitting surfaces.
Caesarstone quartz surfaces are also compliant with the International Health and Safety Foundation sanitary standard NSF51, ensuring that Caesarstone’s working surfaces are safe in all food environments.
The mindful MATERIALS library features human health and environmental impacts for products from a variety of manufacturers that are vetted by passionate experts to simplify product decisions for all consumers. Caesarstone materials are included as the company is able to disclose the materials within its products.
The Health Product Declaration (HPD)® Open Standard* necessitates a full disclosure of the potential chemicals of concern in products by comparing product ingredients to a set of priority “hazard” lists based on the GreenScreen for Safer Chemicals and additional lists from other government agencies.
SW: As a Gold Member of U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), please share some of the experiences Caesarstone has gained being a part of this organization.
EM: Caesarstone’s gold member status with USGBC provides access to the council’s education and networking opportunities and keeps the company updated on the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification program and benchmarks.
SW: How often does Caesarstone evaluate its procedures and systems to ensure it is maintaining a healthy and safe work environment?
EM: All Caesarstone production facilities, including two in Israel and one in Richmond Hill, GA, report on key metrics on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis, which leads to constant evaluation and improvement across all health and safety environmental standards.
SW: Tell us about some of the benefits of Caesarstone quartz products.
EM: Caesarstone is the industry pioneer and global leader for the original quartz surface. It was the world’s first company to establish a new product genre in the industry by harnessing the extraordinary physical properties of quartz, one of Earth’s strongest minerals, to create a unique and glamorous product.
Since 1987, Caesarstone has been skillfully manufacturing high-quality quartz surface solutions for a variety of applications and uses in private residences, hotels, restaurants, healthcare facilities and retail environments. Since the products are non-toxic, nonporous and germ-resistant, it makes them an ideal surface solution for such spaces.
Caesarstone’s quartz surfaces are also low maintenance. They never require the use of sealants, unlike with other natural materials like marble and granite. Simple cleaning materials, such as soap and water, are usually sufficient. The surfaces are long-lasting and durable, delivering both improved life cycle costs and additional investment value.
SW: What is next on the horizon for Caesarstone, in regards to its commitment to the environment, as well as new product introductions?
EM: Caesarstone will continue to maintain and innovate our production processes and products to lead the industry in environmental efforts. The company will share milestones and updates as appropriate.
Just as the company leads the way in environmental efforts, Caesarstone will also maintain its groundbreaking product development, including soon launching Caesarstone porcelain surfaces given last year’s acquisition of Lioli Ceramica.