What were new materials at Interzum?


Interzum and Ligna 2023 took place after a gap of 4 years. The expectations were naturally high – and visitors were not disappointed! Exhibitors went out of their way to bring out their best in decors, finishes, and new technologies.

I noticed the following trends in surface technologies: matt, soft matt, higher scratch- and stain-resistant materials.

There were also structured surfaces that mimic the look and feel of veneer. This reduces costs for customers, offers uniform surfaces, and is also eco-friendly. PET films and foils are also gaining acceptance. This is good news for the recycling industry.

High-quality, calibrated plywood with low emissions (E0) is very much in demand; especially the laminated variation, which reduces processing time and cost for furniture manufacturers.

Most importantly, there is an increased emphasis on sustainability. FSC-certified paper is used by most manufacturers. Emissions are reduced by eliminating harmful VOCs, formaldehyde and aldehydes.

Structured surfaces on plywood are the most promising of the product groups. Till a few years ago such finishes were available only on MDF or particle board. There were very few options where plywood was used, and the quality was not up to the mark.

Indian customers are biased in favour of plywood and hence there used to be a trade-off between finish and quality. Not anymore! Nine-foot-tall, structured surfaces on plywood make life super easy for clients. They are ideal for the popular floor-to-ceiling wardrobes and room divider market.

In India we have generous use of oil, ghee and spices in cooking, presenting a challenge to maintain the beauty of our furniture for an extended period. These challenges are now addressed by companies using innovative scratch removal technology (SRT).

This technology offers a host of benefits for clients including: industry-leading 5 Newtons (5N) of scratch resistance; minor scratches healing on their own; and extreme resistance to staining, even by spices like turmeric.

Decorative surfaces are treated with a special overlay which is then cured using proprietary ‘electron beam curing’. This process not only gives the smoothest and softest touch but also a highly durable finish.

There is a wide range of solid colours, designs and metallic finishes available to suit each consumer’s preference. The icing on the cake is perfectly matched: 1-mm-thick ABS edge bands which complete the look and feel of premium furniture.




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