It’s the very definition of a sustainable business: a Kiwi roofing company has boasted continuous growth through two recessions and now exports worldwide.
Established in Auckland in 1957, Gerard Roofs is a household name in New Zealand. While most of what we buy is manufactured offshore, this company’s products are still manufactured from the original Glen Innes site and exported to more than 120 countries around the world. One of the ways Gerard Roofs has kept up the momentum of growth and further cemented a long-lasting legacy for the company has been to meet the growing demand for more sustainable construction materials.
Building on the foundation of using recyclable steel, Gerard Roofs has introduced initiatives to reduce its carbon footprint and encourage the community participation of its staff by providing opportunities to participate in volunteering activities. It’s a holistic approach to sustainability which is paying off in a demand for their products here and overseas. In October 2010, a dedicated environmental co-ordinator and technologist, Nicola Morrison, was brought on board. Her effect has been such that she is a finalist in the Sustainable Business Network awards to be held early next month.
Morrison has introduced in-house initiatives like tree planting days, switching to Fair Trade kitchen consumables, and education around travel – including providing hybrid test-drives on site.
“Sowing the seeds of sustainability is not just a public relations move. Taking a proactive and holistic approach to sustainability helps to reduce emissions and, in most cases, reduce operating costs,” says Morrison.