What do insiders have to say regarding market outlook projections for 2020 and beyond? Here’s a snapshot look at the good and not-so-good news from Woodworking Network’s editor of special publications, Karen M. Koenig.
- “The U.S. hardwood flooring industry employs 45,000 people, contributes $4 billion to U.S. gross domestic product, and generates $8.5 billion in U.S. economic output, according to a recent Economic Impact Study commissioned by the Hardwood Federation.
- Of the roughly $11.6 billion floor coverings imported into the United States in 2018, hardwood flooring accounted for slightly less than $1.5 billion and laminate flooring for about $614.0 million, according to estimates from the U.S. Department of Commerce and Catalina Research. With their ability to mimic the look of real wood, LVT and WPC were named the biggest threats to wood flooring by contractors in NWFA’s 2020 Industry Outlook survey.
- In the National Wood Flooring Assn.’s 2020 Industry Outlook survey, more than 64 percent of manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and contractors forecast an increase in wood flooring demand, with about half predicting a rise between 3-7 percent, and 14 percent projecting growth of more than 8 percent. Nearly a quarter of respondents, however, were pessimistic about 2020. (Published in Hardwood Floors magazine.)
- What’s trending in wood flooring? According to NWFA’s 2020 Industry Outlook survey, it’s wider, longer planks in light colors. White oak continues to be the go-to-species, in part due to its availability. Textures are still in demand, although the survey predicted a decrease in hand-scraped finishes due to their difficulty for cleaning. Gray, natural and other light colors continue to be popular.”
Wood Components & Industrial Products
“The market outlook continues to be positive for wood components and industrial products.
- A snapshot of the $8.6 billion U.S. wood moulding and millwork segment projects 4.4 percent annual growth through 2022. (Wood Component Manufacturers Assn., Wood Products Manufacturers Assn.)
- A survey by Cabinet Makers Assn. and FDMC of more than 200 mostly small to mid-size custom woodworkers found the top five products being outsourced are: turnings, cabinet doors, drawer boxes, carvings/onlays/decorative parts, and countertops.
- With respect to industrial products, wood continues to be the dominant material for pallet usage, with U.S. demand projected to reach 1.4 billion units in 2019. (Freedonia)
- Demand for new wood crossties is projected to reach 23.1 million, an increase of 2.0 percent over 2018. The Railway Tie Assn./Crossties also forecasts growth for 2020, to 23.4 million ties.
- And according to Transparency Market Research, the pellets market is projected to reach sales of $20 billion by 2023.”
Karen M. Koenig, a contributor to FDMC and other Woodworking Network online and print media owned by CCI Media, has more than 30 years of experience in the woodworking industry. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.