Poyry: “Are decorative surfaces ready to meet the circular economy challenge?”

From right: Ania Krolak, Senior Consultant (Pöyry Management Consulting); Wolfgang Gutting, VP Glues and Impregnating Resins (BASF); Paul Clegg, CEO (Accsys Group); Peter Clifton, Product Manager Medite Tricoya Extreme (Coillte Panel Products); Naci Güngör, Brand and Communications Manager (Kastamonu Entegre); Anders Pettersson, Flatline Material & Technique Specialist Purchase Development (IKEA),Tomi Hartikainen, Principal (Pöyry Management Consulting)


In the absence of consumer willingness to pay a premium for more sustainable products, the decorative surfaces industry should take the lead in accelerating this adoption. This was one of the conclusions at a Pöyry Executive Session.

The session was part of the 16th Decorative Surfaces Conference organised by Technical Conference Management, held April 6-7 2016 in Leipzig. Over 230 participants attended.

The theme ‘Sustainability driven innovation in decorative surfaces value chain’ was chosen as the circular economy has become a highly discussed topic in Europe. In circular economy waste does not exist, only resources. Materials are based on renewable resources and given back to the environment in a naturally regenerative process.

The panel discussion entitled: ‘Are decorative surfaces ready to meet the circular economy challenge?’ was preceded by short presentations. Tomi Hartikainen from Pöyry Management Consulting gave an overview of the key challenges and opportunities that the bio-economy brings for the wood panel and decorative surfaces industry. He also presented case studies showing cradle-to-cradle laminates, biomimicry and bacterial remediation as tools to achieve the circular economy principles.

Wolfgang Gutting, BASF vice president for Glues and Impregnating Resins, showed that sustainability is a reality, not a marketing gimmick for BASF, by sharing that 6% of raw materials used by the chemical giant are from renewable sources. He stressed the need to use the ‘right’ bio-based feedstocks i.e. 2G bio-feedstocks which do not compete with arable land. Finally, he presented a MFC panel concept based on BASF glues and impregnating resins from renewable feedstock.

Paul Clegg, CEO of Accsys Technologies and Chairman of Tricoya Technologies Ltd, presented a success story of acetylation technology which allows the production of formaldehyde-free and fully recyclable Accoya solid wood and Tricoya MDF panels. Accoya has already been accredited with Cradle-to-Cradle certificate, while Tricoya is in the process of achieving it.

Peter Clifton, product manager for Medite Tricoya Extreme of Coillte Panel Products, stressed the need for exterior surfaces that are non-toxic, long lasting, with minimal maintenance required and a low carbon footprint.

Naci Güngör, Brand and Communications Manager of Kastamonu Entegre, presented the Turkish wood panel and decorative surfaces producer’s initiatives to become a more sustainable company that grows in harmony with the environment, its employees and community.

Anders Pettersson, Flatline Material & Technique Specialist of IKEA Sweden, gave examples of how IKEA makes furniture from waste, saving materials, time and creating the opportunity to reinvent materials.

The session concluded with a panel discussion.