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USA      International

International Update: Tecno Mueble Internacional 2022, Mexico Visit

November 07, 2022

American Softwoods Latin America and U.S. forest products industry representatives traveled to Guadalajara, Mexico, August 15-21, 2022, to exhibit at the Tecno Mueble Internacional 2022, conduct an educational seminar, visit construction sites and meet with the largest association of wood products importers in Mexico.

This was American Softwood’s first exhibit at a tradeshow in Mexico since 2019, and it was a great opportunity to meet with new contacts and reconnect with existing ones. This year’s larger booth had a new design compared which generated more traffic – and contacts – compared to previous years. Most visitors this year wanted information on contacting producers/wholesalers of Southern Yellow Pine lumber, oriented strand board (OSB), and plywood. There also was an increase in inquiries for overlaid panels such as MDO and HDO.

Attendees included:

This visit allowed the representatives above to perform some trade servicing in Guadalajara. That started with a visit to FICAMEX, a lumber and panel distributor that also builds wood-frame buildings. Most of their clients are furniture manufacturers that purchase U.S. lumber because of its strength, stability, and strong performance in both indoor and outdoor applications. To showcase the durability and longevity of U.S. Southern Yellow Pine and glulam beams, they built a house on their property to clients the benefit of American softwoods.

The delegation later visited the BANSI tower, a 33-story bank building that used U.S. Southern Yellow Pine for the rooftop and restaurant decks, in addition to U.S. HDO panels to construct the building itself. The finished concrete has a crystal finish, which means the builder did not have to do anything to the product after removing the HDO panels – a characteristic of their high quality.

Other highlights included:

  • A tour of the building erected during a November 2019 construction workshop at the University of Guadalajara. The school’s Wood Science Department showed off its facilities, which included the building. While construction was paused because of COVID-related shutdowns, they have resumed work on it and plan to turn it into an office and library.
  • An educational seminar with opening remarks by Andre Bradley, deputy director of the Mexico City ATO followed by a presentation from Brian Court, who talked about sustainable construction with wood and showed a variety of projects his firm has completed. Eric Gee rounded out the agenda by talking about sustainable U.S. forestry practices, Southern Yellow Pine, and the overall sustainability of U.S. wood products. Attendees included importers, panel and lumber distributors, builders, architects, students, and furniture manufacturers.
  • A meeting with IMEXFOR, the largest association in Mexico made up of wood importers and distributors. This meeting allowed the Mexican and American delegations to discuss the wood products industry in both countries, product availability, import/export issues, worldwide competitors, and port issues. Ideas for future collaboration were also discussed, including IMEXFOR’s participation in a reverse trade mission or a joint seminar. Brad Rose with Rose Research, AMSO’s program auditor, reported on findings regarding feedback from the Mexican trade after their contact/participation in an American Softwoods event and how likely they’d be to try a U.S. wood product.

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