Members are consistently reporting increasing prices and supply shortages for foam and particle boards.......

Material Shortages Squeeze Furniture Production and Pricing

Members are consistently reporting increasing prices and supply shortages for foam and particle boards.

Foam supplies and prices
BFM do not have the full details but members are consistently reporting that foam suppliers are reporting shortages in chemical feedstocks, principally TDI. The main block suppliers have struggled through September to supply industry needs and they have now advised of ongoing chemical shortages throughout October. This is resulting in factories being put on reduced allocations of foam block for October. Shortages and lack of availability is affecting production capacity in the critical pre-Christmas delivery period. Furthermore and as a result of these shortages prices have been increasing and most factories are now discussing a third price increase in a few months. Cumulative increases are typically 25% and given that foam is one of the biggest costs in furniture production, factories will need to pass on price increases to customers.

Particle board supply and prices
This mainly affects the cabinet sector who are seeing significant shortages on medium density fibreboard(MDF) and melamine faced chipboard (MFC). Many European suppliers of MFC have also withdrawn from the UK market due to the uncertainties of Brexit. Due to supply shortages manufacturers are now on an allocation basis with allocations at around 75% of pre covid purchases. Accordingly suppliers are now raising their prices, meaning factories will need to increase their factory gate prices.