Howdens, a leading UK trade kitchen supplier, has been awarded Lab Approved Status for its kitchen products by FIRA International.

Howdens is the only current kitchen manufacturer in the world to be FIRA International Lab Approved, with the award recognising Howdens rigorous and thorough testing and quality assurance process.

Tradespeople will benefit significantly from this new testing process, with 50% reduction in testing time during new product development, as well as Howdens being able to offer a more agile service when it comes to the latest market trends and customer requirements.

“Being FIRA International Lab Approved is a huge milestone in the history of Howdens as it recognises our extensive testing process, not only across our kitchens but also our Joinery, Ironmongery, Worktops and Cabinets categories,” comments Steve McClean, Head of Technical & Quality at Howdens.

“Our standard practice exceeds British and European standards through our back-to-back testing of comparative products, as well as the Howdens Trade Tests. This includes finish performance and structural testing which covers door slam tests, cabinetry strength tests and stain tests on worktops and frontals; affording our customers peace of mind.”

Howard James, Testing and Technical Manager at FIRA International, adds: “Being the only kitchen manufacturer to be awarded FIRA International Lab Approved status shows Howdens’ dedication to ensuring its customers have access to only the highest quality products.

“Their testing programme is of a gold standard. FIRA International will continue to audit their process to ensure that competency remains high.”

Howdens’ testing lab covers four key areas, including structural, colour, environmental and finish performance testing.

To guarantee the highest quality of standards, the company will be subject to FIRA International audits throughout the year to ensure that the company’s testing remains up to standard.