Sustainable forestry to the sound of musical notes: the first PEFC-certified harpsichord

Sweet music could be heard last month at the MADE Expo in Milan, Italy, as the world’s first PEFC-certified harpsichord serenaded visitors.

Sustainable forestry to the sound of musical notes: the first PEFC-certified harpsichord

21 April 2015 News

This unique musical instrument was made by the “Fratelli Leita” of Paularo (Udine), Northern Italy, craftsmen who restore and build musical instruments, and is the first in the world to be made with PEFC-certified wood (85%) and controlled sources, with no timber from tropical areas.

The main body of the instrument is made from PEFC-certified spruce wood, with other types of timber, such as walnut (rather than Asian ebony) and hornbeam (instead of Brazilian boxwood) for certain special components.

The goal was to create a harpsichord, based on the 1680 project of G.B. Giusti, which could be an example for a different way of doing business in the Italian wood industry: to protect the forests while also enhancing and strengthening the fabric of local businesses.

“We have used different types of timber that are not normally used to build a harpsichord, including PEFC-certified spruce wood, walnut and hornbeam,” said Alessandro Leita. “We chose these specific types of wood so we could create a musical instrument using only Italian tree species, rather than tropical woods, in this case wood from the Carnia forests in Friuli Venezia Giulia Region.”

This was an innovative choice by the brothers, Alessandro and Michele Leita, giving a clear message of their business strategy to create value where the wood is grown: a strategy shared with eight other companies in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region, which make up the PEFC network of enterprises called “12-to-Many”.

The musical exhibition during this international “Architecture and Design” fair in Milan was performed by the talented concertist Angelica Selmo, with musical pieces written by Frescobaldi and Scarlatti. The concert was financed by PEFC Italy and hosted by the stand of the Friuli Venezia Giulia region, made entirely of PEFC-certified spruce wood coming from the same region.

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