Steady growth in Brazil’s laminate wood flooring market has prompted the leading local manufacturers to expand their capacity despite continued national dominance of ceramic tile floors.

Laminate flooring has seen growth of between 15-20% in recent years in Brazil. Last year the market is reported to have expanded by 21% although wood laminates still only account for less than 2% of floor finishing in Brazil.

Local producers are fighting off powerful competition from Chinese flooring imports. Out of around 1 million m2/year currently bought into Brazil, some 800,000 m2/year is reported to be coming from China.  

Even so, the market leaders, Brazilian wood panel groups Duratex and Eucatex have doubled their flooring production capacity. In May, Duratex has extended its product range and volume by installing a new Homag line at its plant in Agudos, São Paulo state. 

That will enable it eventually to raise output of its Durafloor products from 5 million m2/year to 12 million m2/year when the market demands.

The new line is now running and Duratex intends later to improve and streamline its original flooring line through a retrofit project.

Meanwhile, the other main Brazilian eucalypt panel producer Eucatex announced it is investing US$7.6m to double its Eucafloor flooring capacity at its Botucatu plant in the same state, from 6 million m2/year to 12 million m2/year.

Another national flooring supplier, the Chilean wood panels producer Arauco last year reported the 250,000 m2/month Floorest flooring line was operating to capacity at its Brazilian plant in Piên, Paraná state.