Spartanburg-based Milliken & Co. joins forces with Well Living Lab

Milliken & Co. said it has become a founding member of the Well Living Lab, a collaborative research initiative led by the wellness firm Delos and the Mayo Clinic dedicated to studying the impacts of indoor environments on health and wellness.

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For decades, Milliken & Co. has championed safety and wellness for its associates.

On Tuesday, Nov. 28, the Spartanburg-based manufacturer announced it will take part in new research that could impact employees at workplaces across the globe.

Milliken & Co. said it has become a founding member of the Well Living Lab, a collaborative research initiative led by the wellness firm Delos and the Mayo Clinic dedicated to studying the impacts of indoor environments on health and wellness.

The company said it has joined 18 other building science and medical research leaders to create “healthier spaces in which to live and work.”

“In exploring, discovering, and creating meaningful ways to enrich daily life, Milliken associates are first and foremost innovators with purpose,” said Paul Pruitt, director of environmental, health, safety, and engineering for Milliken & Co., in a statement. “Our goal is to purposefully collaborate with the Well Living Lab to better our world in a meaningful manner.”

According to the company, the Well Living Lab and its collaborators will seek to advance industry’s approach to conceptualizing, creating, and building indoor spaces by studying the “built environment’s” impact on human health.

Milliken & Co. said it will contribute to the work by:

•Applying material transparency and selection knowledge gleaned from the floor covering industry.

•Diving into the material makeup of its flooring products allowed for the company to better understand— and ultimately, make more informed decisions about —sourcing materials for responsible product development.

•Advocating for safety and wellness principles, which Milliken has a legacy of developing and implementing.

•Serving as a resource in health, wellness, and environmental matters that extend beyond the built environment.

“We are pleased to have Milliken join our Well Living Lab Alliance, and look forward to working and learning together as we uncover scientific findings to transform health and well-being in built environments,” said Brent Bauer, medical director of the Well Living Lab and director of the Mayo Clinic’s Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program, in a statement.

Milliken & Co. was founded in 1865 in Maine as the Deering Milliken Co., a wholesaler of wool fabrics and dry goods.

During the latter part of the 19th century and most of the 20th century, a large portion of the company’s business was focused on textile manufacturing.

Innovation and research have always been at core of the company’s practices.

Today, the company holds more than 5,000 patents worldwide and has expertise across a range of industries, including specialty chemicals, floor covering, and performance and protective textiles.

It is currently ranked No. 1 on the list of South Carolina’s top 100 privately held companies, according to Grant Thornton.

Milliken & Co. has garnered numerous awards for health and safety initiatives.

The company has been named one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies every year since the Ethisphere Institute first introduced the list in 2007.

In September, Milliken & Co. announced it was one of 14 companies on the 2017 America’s Safest Companies List presented by EHS Today magazine.

It was the company’s third appearance on the EHS Today list created in 2002, and Milliken & Co. became the first company to be named to the America’s Safest Companies Hall of Fame.

“From conscientious product development to mindful and deliberate sustainability practices, we know that by protecting our planet, we also advance our community in the process,” said Philip Ivey, strategic sustainability leader for the global Milliken floor covering division, in a statement. “By stepping forward to contribute to the Well Living Lab, we hope to share what Milliken has learned in the last 150 years in order to enhance the lives of those around us.”

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