Our founder William Wainman started the business selling Bamboo based products after becoming fascinated by the material during 2½ years spent teaching English China with VSO.
A small factory was set up in the central Chinese province of Hunan to produce furniture creating a small team of fairly paid and supported craftspeople.
After a request by the British Embassy in Beijing, a small run of bamboo coffins were produced. These sold quickly and the factory started producing coffins full time.
The business was renamed Ecoffins reflecting the products environmentally friendly credentials.
Selected for a scholarship to the US Kellogg Graduate School of Management, William undertook pivotal market research at Funeral Homes across America and in 2006 his commitment to good working conditions and fair pay was recognised when Ecoffins became a member of the World Fair Trade Organisation, the first (and currently only) UK coffin manufacturer to obtain this status.
With continuing success in the UK, new ranges of eco friendly coffins were introduced including Willow, Pandanus, Pine and cardboard designs.
The Ecoffins team grew and was granted its Investor in People Gold accreditation reflecting best practise and a high performance working environment.
Always passionate about the Earth and our responsibilities to it, as the company grew, a purpose built eco friendly office and warehouse opened in rural Kent (designed by William Matthews the site architect for The Shard).
In China our Fair trade promises continued with the Hunan team also building an entirely new workshop and growing in size to support increased demand as the general public began to look for more eco friendly funeral alternatives..
The company remains a family business and is looking forward to the future with the development of new products and an ongoing commitment promoting the idea of eco friendly funerals, as well as celebrating 10 years in the World Fair Trade Organisation this year.