Evolution of WPC & current status in India

PLY REPORTER – September 2014, India.
Q. Evolution of WPC in India?

A. WPC as a product has evolved passionately within last 3 Years. WPC as a panel product is very well accepted by Indian market. Wpc is an official product segment today and there are good manufacturers in the country now.

Q. No. of plants (installed and coming) in India, and market size.

A. There are 35 WPC board lines and14 WPC profile lines, which is merely 2% of the total wood panel manufacturing of India.

Q. How do you see the future of this product in India? Pls give the reasons.

A. Very strong of course! This is a product as an investment, not an expense. India is a market where wood panels are in demand today and going to be in demand, untill we reach to a level of other developed countries of the world. Thus in panel category WPC panels would play as a major product in future.

We have moisture conditions all around the nation, as country is carrying longer sea coast. Apart from that the land types here supports termite development and spread rapidly and at any height. WPC has moisture resistance and termite resistance, thus the product is being spread pan nation, much positively.

The most important reason is its environment friendliness that no fresh trees are cut or used. All we use are sawmill dust or agricultural wastes.

Today, India has become a centre for WPC manufacturing with almost 50 lines and lot of foreign inquiries are being received by Indian companies.

Q. Why should a dealer sell this product?

If he is a dealer for wood panels and allied products than he has ready market for WPC products now.

Good quality WPC products have really better margins today. In compare to regular marine or other plywood or MDF panels WPC are becoming popular and real earning products.

There are best opportunities available for dealers to be associated with WPC producers.

Q. Application area and advantages of WPC.

WPC can be used in all modular furniture products e.g. Doors, kitchen carcass, wardrobe shutters, bathroom vanities, partitions and more.

For applications like modular kitchen carcass and wardrobe carcass WPC is the best substrate which can be used without any laminate or coating.

Refined surface of WPC gives ready to print/paint surface which doesn’t need surfacer/putty filling.

It can be used with solvent joining which is the fastest ever system for furniture making and sandwich construction.

Q. There is lack of awareness in India as well as no govt authorized certification. What is your opinion?

Awareness is quite there now and manufacturers have started enjoying supply crisis because of consistently increasing demand. Still I strongly insist for professional marketing, advertising and branding practices from WPC players. There should be carpenter training programs by companies, educating them about product advantages and fast assemblies.

I urge for an establishment of WPC manufacturer’s association of India, supported by leaders like Reliance, LG or Finolex. As PVC has got a drastic raise in sales volume in the country and have reached to an installed consumption capacity of 50, 000 Metric tones per annum. To support WPC sector for generating larger revenue out of domestic as well as foreign markets, there should be IS standard for these products. There should be a listing under Green category, as product doesn’t use any natural/forest wood, doesn’t generate process waste, it’s 100% recyclable, uses sawmill/agro wastes and saves paper.

Q. Presently, who is driving this product in India? and what is your suggestion to specifiers and users?

Overall all the players are driving WPC potentially and I would term it as a cooperative effort!

Explore numerous applications and educate the market more and more. I will say, USE WPC. Save trees. Save earth.

Hardik Panchal