The year 2019 was a turning point for wood flooring industry especially US market, not only Anti-dumping/Anti-subsidy rate reached a highest 49%, also the new 301 investigation act 25% tariff has started since Feb 2019. The impact is huge to both Chinese suppliers and US importers, it also changed old supply chain system that was established for past many years.
An unexpected pandemic Covid-19 has made everything even more difficult when entered the year 2020. Material processing and shipping are both slowing down, as a result wood resource is in much less quantity and lower grading condition than ever before. Plus exchange rate between RMB / USD keep increasing and sea freight level is reaching a rate which no one ever experienced before. Everything that is going on making lower value added products importers can do nothing but keep watching and waiting.
Based on VIFloor 20 years experience in wood flooring industry, we are offering some purchase suggestions particularly regarding USA market.
1.Solid Wood Flooring
Solid wood flooring doesn’t have big market share in total USA flooring industry but it certainly has rigid demand. Of all solid wood flooring, 90% selling quantity is oak but due to the limitation of material, oak solid flooring supply ability will become a real problem. For example the North East China area which is the major production site of oak solid flooring, overall supply quantity in 2021 of all different sizes will not be exceed 40000m2, solid oak will become a high end type of flooring. Therefore if you consider purchasing it, make sure to design the flooring as a big margin product. Take advantage of lower labor cost of China and aim for human hand work designs, antique distress surface finish, reactive stains, everything that can add value to end products, those types of flooring is becoming featured product in US market. In the near future when there is less resource and sales quantity, solid oak can become a type of flooring that generate much more profit.
To those who purchasing big quantity solid flooring, 2 layer solid structure really should be considered when real solid oak supply hits the bottleneck. 3mm oak veneer plus a finger joint base board, the look will be exact same as 5’’ solid flooring. The feedback is excellent after 3 years working in the US market. The finger joint base board can better support the structure which makes it more stable and better adjustment to environmental changes. This type of flooring has higher cost performance ratio, and suitable for glue down installation therefore provide more profit to retailers, makes them more willingly to push the 2 layer to customers. Soon 2 layer structure will replace solid flooring and become a real quantity driven product
Birch solid flooring even is a minority type of wood, it is a quite good choice because of its stable supply from Far East area grown high density birch trees. Normal handscraped and antique designs are regular finish of birch flooring, and personal opinion carbonized birch can be an upgraded next level product. Many professionals known that carbonized solid wood has very good selling points such as beautiful colors, available in click system, stable and purified air function. Birch solid wood flooring can be the first choice In terms of cost performance, supply, and supply consistency
2, Engineered Wood Flooring:
Because of the Anti-dumping/Anti-subsidy, many of the purchase from China has stopped, but compare to South Asian suppliers, Chinese manufacturers have obvious advantage from production methods to products characteristics
Life has to move on even the time is tough, there are too many experience and stories worth sharing with all of you, and we would love to continue if you find this topic is interesting.