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KBB Birmingham conference update:

Drawers, doors and lifting systems - a study into the real usage of kitchens

FIRA Project Manager, Sue Calver, will be presenting the findings of a study into the real usage of kitchens at 11.00 on 5th March at kbb 2012, at Birmingham's NEC.

The FIRA funded study for Blum has looked into how real-life kitchens are used and the impact this has on the design, manufacture and installation of furniture fittings.

The study is the outcome of a Design & Innovation competition held to celebrate 60 years since the establishment of the Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA). The competition, launched in 2009, was open to all FIRA member companies looking to become more competitive through design and innovation. The overall aim was that the results would enhance the competitiveness of the industry as a whole.

As the competition winner, Blum was awarded a £20,000 prize fund, enabling it to extend a worldwide project that had been operating for 25 years, involving the monitoring of a broad selection of kitchens in Europe. With additional support from FIRA, Blum extended the study to monitor kitchen usage in 22 homes across a full geographical spread of Britain.

Talking ahead of the seminar, Sue said: "The goal of the Blum study is to collect data relating to the real-life use of kitchens within the UK, to understand in-depth, how kitchens are used and the impact this may have on future kitchen planning and manufacture.

"This has been an exciting project for Blum and FIRA and I am sure the results will benefit the whole of the kitchen industry. I am looking forward to sharing the results of the project so far at the show."

The study has involved FIRA technicians, trained by Blum, fitting the designated kitchens with monitoring equipment, including sensors and 6-digit counters to determine:

- Loads applied to doors and drawers
- Cycles of doors, drawers and lift systems throughout an kitchen lifetime
- Changes in use over time (i.e. moves towards full extension, changing storage options etc)

FIRA technicians have returned to the 22 households to gather results which are focused primarily on the following cabinet areas of the kitchens:

* Cutlery - main
* Daily used crockery
* Daily used glassware
* Daily used mugs/cups
* Pots and pans
* Waste disposal (if fitted)
* Consumables - tins/jars/packets
* Utensils - spatulas/whisks/fish slicers/ can openers etc
* Clingfilm, foil, bags etc
* Pet food

The kitchens will continue to be monitored for a number of years to come.

A VIP buffet lunch and drinks reception will be held following the seminar allowing delegates to meet representatives from FIRA and Blum to ask further questions regarding the project findings.

Please register to attend the seminar discussing the FIRA and Blum study by emailing:

[email protected]

To register to attend the exhibition, please visit www.kbb.co.uk. Seminars held at kbb are free of charge to exhibition visitors.


17th February 2012

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