Norwalk, Conn. -- Metroflor announced that the Elegant Home-Tech Company Limited facility in Zhangjiagang, China, which manufactures its Aspecta commercial luxury vinyl tile (LVT) product, received the first-ever JUST label for a Chinese company and the first JUST label for a LVT flooring manufacturer. To receive the JUST label, the company had to provide numerous policies for public review and be rated on a wide range of metrics including safety, diversity, worker benefits and community engagement.

The JUST platform was created by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) as a way for organizations to be transparent about their entire operations beyond product ingredients. Rather than a certification program, JUST is like a nutrition label for socially just and equitable organizations. The program requires reporting and documentation on a range of organization- and employee-related indicators, each requiring specific and measurable accountabilities recognized on a one, two or three star level, which are published on the JUST label.

“The idea of pursuing a JUST label for a Chinese factory is courageous and profound,” said Rochelle Routman, Aspecta’s chief sustainability officer. “By accomplishing this, we have created a benchmark for our factory as well as the entire U.S. manufacturing sector sourcing from factories in Asia. The world is moving past the stigma of ‘Made in China’ because modern factories such as Elegant Home-Tech have made great strides in worker experience, quality control, and product and social transparency. It is Aspecta that is leading this movement to take transparency beyond US borders.”

Jin Song, CEO of Elegant Home-Tech, supports the JUST effort and understands the need for transparency at the large flooring factory, which employs over 1000 people. Metroflor is also fortunate to have Simon Xia, its general manager for China and liaison to Elegant Home-Tech, who assisted the team in overcoming the language barrier and setting the documentation process of existing policies in motion. Xia worked with Francis Janes, ILFI’s JUST manager, who walked him through the JUST parameters. This enabled Xia to evaluate and document transparency and social equity practices enabling the company to achieve the coveted label.

“Earning the first JUST label for a Chinese company demonstrates our system-wide transparency, which we hope will inspire the future direction of manufacturing in China,” said Corey Carter, Metroflor’s director of sustainability.

The announcement of the first JUST label for a Chinese company will coincide with the “Positively Made in China” panel during the upcoming Living Future unConference in Portland, Ore., May 2 to 4. The presentation will take the audience on an inside journey to green manufacturing in China. Routman and Xia will be joined by James Connelly, vice president, Products and Strategic Growth, ILFI, and Ryan Dick, founder and COO of GIGA, to explore the symbiotic relationship between U.S. and China manufacturing and the vast opportunity that exists there for performance-driven sustainability.

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