Corporate Social Responsibility


SustainabilityAs a business we work hard to increase focus on the balanced consideration of economic, social and environmental issues in making business decisions on all activities, products supplied and services carried out by Grafton Merchanting GB Ltd.

The organisation is committed to delivering its vision for sustainable development throughout its branches. This requires that all our policies, plans, service and products should be considered for their impact on the environment and how they will contribute to a more sustainable environment.

Sustainable Products

OUR VISION - Grafton Merchanting GB is aiming to become the merchant business of choice for the supply of all environmental and sustainable products to the construction industry. We will do this by focusing on our environmental and corporate social responsibilities and through the training and development of our staff.

Grafton works with its suppliers to develop and improve the environmental efficiency by which goods and services are provided throughout the business. This ensures that products are more environmentally-friendly and have less impact on the environment, both during production and once installed.












FSC and PEFC Timber

FSC and PEFC TimberBuildbase was the first national builders merchant to supply Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified timber in most of its branches in 2004. FSC-certified plywood is now also available from Buildbase branches. The company also supports the PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification).

At Buildbase, Jacksons, Hendricks Lovell and L&G Forest Products, FSC ‘chain of custody’ covers the origins of all redwood and whitewood planed square-edged timber and mouldings.

Detailed documentation tracks certified timber from the forest to the logging company, sawmill, factory, distributor and merchant.

Grafton’s policy is to ensure that its natural timber products continue to be FSC/PEFC accredited.

The entire operation is independently audited and completely transparent to guarantee that the timber is legally harvested and comes from a sustainable source.


Buildbase, Jacksons, Hendricks Lovell and L&G Forest Products have all adopted the Timber Trade Federation’s ‘responsible purchasing policy’. This demonstrates that the business is committed to sourcing timber and timber products from legal and well-managed forests. It also supports the UK/EU global objective to stop illegal logging.

“The council takes seriously its responsibility to promote environmental sustainability. Awarding contracts to companies who also take their corporate responsibilities seriously is one way in which we can promote a greener city.”

Please click on our certificates to view.



EnvironmentalISO 14001 Environmental Champions
Grafton Merchanting GB has several businesses which are accredited under ISO 9001. These include some of our Buildbase partnering contracts, T Brewers, TG Lynes, L&G Forest and our fire door business at Buildbase Milton Keynes.

Sustainable Product Solutions
Grafton Merchanting GB recognises the increasing importance of supplying renewable energies and sustainable products for construction needs now and in the future. In response, we have introduced comprehensive product ranges designed to provide sustainable building solutions to the construction industry for compliance with future building regulations. These ranges include the provision of Solar Thermal and Solar PV, Air source heat pumps, ground source heat pumps, Biomass heating, rainwater harvesting and heat recovery ventilation systems.

Environmental Policy
Grafton Merchanting GB Environmental Policy sets out how we will manage our environmental impact and improve environmental performance. The policy sets out our main priorities to address environmental issues and demonstrates our intention for continuous improvement within areas such as:

  • Transport management
  • Carbon reduction (CO2)
  • Energy consumption reduction
  • Reducing, reusing and recycling waste
  • All Grafton merchanting GB brands are ISO 14001 certificated.

Environmental Focus Group
The Grafton Merchanting GB Environmental Focus Group meets every four months to review and discuss all environmental policies.



As a leading national supplier of building materials and associated products it is paramount that Grafton strives to reduce waste going to landfill while increasing levels of recycling.

To this end Grafton has a national deal in place with Biffa, the leading mixed waste management company in the UK, to help us reduce the volume of waste we send to landfill. Grafton have dedicated recycling bins at most of our locations, which has led to our recycling rates achieving an all-time high in our business.

Future work with Biffa will allow Grafton to increase this recycling rate still further to achieve our long term aim of zero waste to landfill.

Carbon Reduction Commitment

As part of its commitment to environmental issues, Grafton Merchanting GB is registered as a stakeholder in the government’s Carbon Reduction Commitment. GMGB has now been awarded the Carbon Trust Standard.

Our pro-active HSQ&E department and the Grafton Merchanting Environmental Focus Group are constantly striving to reduce our carbon footprint and improve our performance in other environmental areas.

Our direct carbon footprint for 2009 was 38,801 tonnes. In 2010 it was 37,648 tonnes. We have set ourselves a target to reduce carbon emissions by 3% a year. Our tonnes of emissions per £m reduced by 6% from 2009 to 2010.

The energy consumption in our buildings accounts for 35% of our carbon footprint. We will have automatic metres in all of our premises, which will help us manage our energy usage more accurately.


Our GMGB purchasing team always look to minimise our packaging whenever we can, as long as it doesn’t compromise safety and quality; we reuse as much of it as we can, but it is inevitable that some will end up with our customers. We regularly monitor the amount of packaging waste we produce each year through our links with Biffpack a recognised compliance scheme.




SocialStaff Development
Grafton Merchanting GB values the major contribution that its employees make to the success of the business. The good customer service, for which Grafton is renowned, relies on the expertise and knowledge of its staff. The organisation operates an active training and development programme which includes industry qualifications and specialist training. Product champions are available at the majority of branches.

Equality & Diversity
Grafton Merchanting GB believes that everyone should be treated fairly and strives to be an Equal Opportunities Employer. This requires that all people are afforded equal opportunities in employment irrespective of their age, gender, marital status, ethnic origin, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, colour or disability. Employment covers all aspects of an individual’s working life, i.e. recruitment, training and development, management of change, performance management grievance, terminations, promotions and transfers.

Grafton businesses are pleased to support the communities in which they trade and recognise their responsibility as members of that local community. Chosen charities include Macmillan Cancer Support which has received some £400,000 through fundraising by Buildbase branches. On a smaller scale, the brands donate materials to local projects that benefit the communities where branches are based and aim to develop close relationships with local groups.




Of all the major merchanting groups Grafton has made it a priority to establish close working partnerships with its suppliers, most of whom are leaders in their product sectors. This alliance with manufacturers and suppliers ensures that Grafton has robust supply chains that are well-documented and easily traceable.

All Grafton suppliers adhere to national or international industry guidelines which govern safety and all aspects of manufacturing. They are also subject to Grafton’s own sustainable development policy. This ensures that sustainable development is a consideration at every stage of the procurement process.

The huge selection of products supplied by Grafton’s merchanting operations, like Buildbase, Plumbase and Jackson Building Centres, range from the basic core building materials to products and materials that are innovative and offer the latest technology available. This is especially appropriate for the public sector which often demands specialist products for particular applications e.g. purpose-designed sanitaryware and fittings for public buildings and products that require little maintenance and, most importantly, are easy to keep clean. Product information and installation advice can also be provided.

Ethical Trading
Our ethical purchasing objective is to ensure that people in the supply chain are treated with respect and have employment rights. This includes the right to freely choose employment, freedom of association, payment of a living wage, working hours that comply with national laws, equal opportunities, a recognised employment relationship, freedom from intimidation and a safe and healthy working environment.

To read our anti-slavery and human trafficking policy click here.

ISO 9001 Quality Assurance
All Grafton Merchanting GB national Buildbase partnering services, Jackson Building Centres, Keel Supply Drywall and Insulation, Acorn Insulation and Drywall, Southern Drywall and Insulation, L&G Forest Products, Hendricks Lovell are all ISO 9001 accredited.