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Wood: Solid still has its advantages over engineered

Nov. 18/25 2013; Volume 27/number15

By Ken Ryan

Screen Shot 2013-11-25 at 2.39.07 PMEven as engineered hardwood flooring gains in market share, solid remains a strong and viable portion, with some executives saying the selection enjoys the perception among consumers of offering greater value than engineered. Continue reading Wood: Solid still has its advantages over engineered

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Unilin raises prices on Columbia, Century wood products

Screen Shot 2013-08-27 at 6.39.33 PMDallas—“Although Unilin, the parent company of Columbia and Century hardwood, continues to take steps to mitigate the impact of increased costs, raw material costs have continued to rise on select lumber and veneer species,” said Shane Calloway, vice president of North American independent distribution sales for Unilin. “The combination of an improving economy and less than ideal logging conditions continues to pressure availability leading to increased demand. Continue reading Unilin raises prices on Columbia, Century wood products

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Environment, safety at head of domestic production

Volume 26/Number 25; April 29/May 6, 2013

By Matthew Spieler

Flooring manufacturers such as HomerWood have been honored for their environmental activities.

Few countries, if any, have as many laws as the U.S. regarding the protection of the health and safety of its people and the environment, from the federal level to local municipalities. In addition, green building rating systems have put a greater emphasis on how far a product travels, rationalizing the closer it is to the jobsite, the less energy required to get it there.

While some may complain about the abundance of regulations, the flooring industry, in many ways, has deemed these rules advantageous to producing products in the U.S.

Randy Merritt, president of Shaw Industries, said the company’s commitment to safety, health and the environment spans past compliance. “Our sustainability practices go beyond basic federal or state requirements. We aim to be an innovation leader, producing products that minimize waste, utilize renewable energy in production when possible and safeguard our natural resources. Shaw has recycled more than 600 million pounds of post-consumer carpet from 2006 through 2011, a major milestone for the growth of carpet reclamation.” Continue reading Environment, safety at head of domestic production

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Quality control: Key advantage to local mill production

Volume 26/Number 25; April 29/May 6, 2013

By Matthew Spieler

With production in Barnwell, S.C., Kronotex is able to check for quality control, something extremely important for producing goods under the Formica brand.

Dalton—Mohawk is hitting the road this year and taking its SmartStrand with DuPont Sorona with it. The mill will continue to prove SmartStrand’s performance attributes in the coast-to-coast “License to Spill” carpet showdown tour in partnership with the nationally syndicated lifestyle television show, “The Better Show.”

The tour, which will make at least 12 stops, will showcase the cleanability and performance of SmartStrand at festivals and home show events. Attendees are invited to spill everything from ketchup and Kool-Aid to wine and coffee on SmartStrand carpet to see if it will clean with just water or mild detergent. Mohawk will promote its local Floorscapes and ColorCenter members at each tour stop and encourage consumers to visit their nearest aligned retailers to take advantage of promotional offers. Continue reading Quality control: Key advantage to local mill production

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Unilin announces hardwood price increase

Dallas — “Unilin remains committed to delivering the finest service and highest quality products to our customers,” said Shane Calloway, vice president of North American independent distribution sales for Unilin.

“Unfortunately, sustained raw material cost increases in hardwood continue to outpace our productivity initiatives,” said Calloway. “As a result, Unilin will be increasing selling prices in the Columbia and Century hardwood lines up to 10% on solid and engineered hardwood flooring, and on accessories. These increases will be effective June 1, 2013.”

“Unilin continues to mitigate the impact of increased raw material costs in every way possible,” added Calloway.  “We remain focused on providing quality products, good service, and the strong price/value relationship that customers have come to expect from our Columbia and Century hardwood brands.”

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Tile: Ceramic companies leaving big impression with small carbon footprint

Ceramic tile has long been known as one of the most hygienically clean and environmentally friendly products the flooring industry has to offer. The segment is full of companies that take the matter of making a small carbon footprint to heart, and in practice, in a very big way. The following is an environmental update of what some companies are currently doing in the way of environmental friendliness. Continue reading Tile: Ceramic companies leaving big impression with small carbon footprint

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Hardwood suppliers see more price hikes on horizon

For the second time this year, hardwood flooring suppliers have raised prices, and with limited lumber supply, rising raw materials costs and cash-flow constraints for sawmills, another round of hikes are likely.

In May, Armstrong and Mohawk announced 6% increases that took effect in July. This followed similar raises in March by many manufacturers. And “we may not be done,” according to Daniel Call, vice president, wood product management, Armstrong. Since the company’s last price increase, lumber and energy prices have continued to rise dramatically. “Appalachian and southern oak in typical flooring grades are up 10% to 15%. Kiln-dried lumber prices are up 20% to 30% on the open market.” Continue reading Hardwood suppliers see more price hikes on horizon