Shengda Forestry is a privately owned company founded in 1997 to produce laminate flooring. In fact, the company claims to have been the firstmanufacturer of this product in China; itsmajor competitor,Power Dekor, only imported laminated board and machined it in China at that time.

The company began by importing highquality HDF (high-density fibreboard) to laminate and machine in its own factory, later moving to Chinese-made board as the quality available improved.
In 2006, it set up Sichuan ShengdaMan Made Fibreboard Co Ltd to make its own base board and placed a contract with Dieffenbacher of Germany to supply an 18.2mx8ft CPS continuous press line. That line went into production in December 2007 and WBPI visited it in March 2008.
In fact, the machinery installation on that first line began in early August 2007 so it was a remarkably quick start-up.
“That first line, designed with a capa city of 130,000m3/year, is running well and producing 160,000m3/year in 2.7 to 12mm thickness, with 50% in thin board for furniture production,said Pan Zhen Qi, general manager of the company’s newest MDF/HDF factory in Guangyuan City.
Today, Shengda has three laminate flooring factories equipped with lines from Hymmen of Germany, in Qinbaijiang and Wenjiang in greater Chengdu City, and in Shanghai.
The Shanghai factory produces veneered MDF and bamboo flooring board as a veneer on MDF, as well as laminate flooring. It also has a direct printing line, made in China, for producing another range of flooring.
Another group factory in Chengdu produces solid wooden doors.
In late 2007/early 2008, the company laid plans for its second MDF/HDF line and in July 2008 carried out its intention to float on the Shenzhen stock market.
“We went to the market on July 16, 2008 and the flotation was very successful,said Mr Pan. So now the planned second line could steam ahead.
“We decided on this site in Guangyuan because wood raw material was readily available in the form of pine and mixed hardwood in a 150-200km range, from forest owned by Shengda Forestry. This resource is just for line 2 – line I has a separate supply.
Guangyuan is a three-hour drive from Chengdu City, which is a two-and-three quarter- hour flight from Beijing.
The Shengda Group owns over 200,000 mu (ca13,300ha) of forest, mainly in Sichuan province.
With a site allocated for the new factory, the order for the press line was again  placed with Dieffenbacher, on August 13, 2008.
Dieffenbacher’s scope of supply was from the green end, including air graders, to the glue kitchen and press line, to raw board handling.
The CPS continuous press is 23m long and eight feet wide and the designed capacity of the line is 220,000m3/year. The press is equipped with Berndorf Band stainless steel endless belts.
Chippers and debarking were from a local supplier, Zhongfuma.
The cut-to-size and sanding line was supplied by Holzma of Germany,  with a Steinemann eight-head sander, while the refiner was a 54in Evo unit from Metso. This was the second Evo machine in China, according toMr Pan.
GreCon of Germany supplied the on the- line quality control, including moisture measurement, thickness and blister detection and density profile, as part of the Dieffenbacher contract.
The energy plant was supplied by Chinese manufacturer Changzhou Union and is fuelled entirely by dust, waste wood and bark.
The resin plant on site was also supplied by Chinese companies and produces melamine urea formaldehyde glues only.
A biological water treatment plant from a local supplier was ready to clean all process water, while the only emissions  control was dust collection, with the dust going to the energy plant.
At the time of my visit, a new office block was under construction and the current office building was destined to become workers’ accommodation, with completion in mid-year. The line had already produced its first boards and was undergoing the finishing touches. Full production commenced on July 1.
As for line 1, 80-90% of production is in the thickness range 3 to 5mm with a density of around 870kg/m3 but the mills do not only supply Shengda’s own flooring works, but also sell to outside companies, depending on where the best price can be obtained.
Total investment in the new factory was RMB410m (US$61m), including purchase of the 300mu (20ha) site bordered by the Nan River. The site will employ around 200 people when running fully.
Markets for the Guangyaun line will be mainly within Sichuan province. “In the future, maybe we will sell to the northern part of China and we hope to export some of our production when the export market improves, but we are 1600km from Shanghai port,said Mr Pan.
For the value-added production, the group has 1,000 shops around China selling its branded flooring products. I asked Mr Pan about the company’s future plans – I was told in 2008 when visiting the first line that a further three MDF/HDF lines were planned.
“We will see how it goes with this line and then maybe we will build a second one here – we have the space,he replied.