European Wood-Based Panel Symposium 2022: Trends and Challenges in the Wood-Based Panel Industry

On the 12th of October 2022, the Wood-based Panel Symposium in Hamburg kicked off with an evening event. The Fraunhofer WKI and the European Panel Federation (EPF) were organising the networking event for the 12th time in cooperation with the International Association for Technical Wood Issues (iVTH). From the 12th to 14th of October 2022, the Wood-Based Panel Symposium offered the approximately 320 participants the opportunity for an exchange on the most important trends and challenges in the wood-based panel industry.

The event started on the 12th of October 2022 with a welcome evening. Professor Dr.-Ing. Bohumil Kasal, Director of the Fraunhofer WKI, together with Kris Wijnendaele, Member of the Board and Technical Director of the EPF, welcomed the approximately 320 participants from the application, manufacturing, and supply industries to the international symposium. 

The first part of the conference on the 13th of October 2022 focussed on current developments. In his presentation, Martin Brettenthaler, EPF Chairman and CEO of the Swiss Krono Group, looked at the global development of the wood-based materials industry with special reference to the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Edi Snaidero, President of the European Furniture Industries Confederation (EFIC) focussed on current and future developments in the furniture industry and cooperation with wood-based panel suppliers in his presentation.

In the further course of the event, the focus was on individual market segments as well as sustainability and detailed issues - for example, around adhesives, wax dispersions, and heat pumps. Fabian Meinker from Hywax GmbH, for example, provided insights into wax dispersions as waterproofing agents in the wood-based materials industry and Professor Dr. Matthias Dieter, head of the Thünen Institute of Forestry in Hamburg, explained current wood market analyses. 

The second day was dedicated to the topic of VOCs and formaldehyde. Professor Dr. Tunga Salthammer from the Fraunhofer WKI gave a presentation with the topic: »A critical review of the TVOC value«. In the afternoon, topics such as computer simulations as well as optimised data use in the wood-based materials industry were then on the agenda.

»The high-calibre speakers provided new insights and perspectives and thus offered the participants a high added value. The guests also particularly appreciate the character of the networking event. The space for exchange and discussions during the breaks provided important impulses beyond the scope of the event,« said Harald Schwab, organiser of the symposium at the Fraunhofer WKI.

Link to the iVTH press release.