Danzer – the world’s largest producer of sliced wood – is to invest major funds in processing technologies for hardwood.

Initially, this will involve three projects: an increase in the production of desk layers for the engineered flooring industry as well as further optimisation of veneer and lumber production.

"In 2012 we started to slice deck lamellas for engineered hardwood flooring and have continuously increased our capacity since then. As part of a €15m investment programme for the next 18 months we are now continuing this development which will increase the production of parquet deck layers," explains Hans-Hoachim Danzer, ceo of Danzer Holding AG.

"The main markets for our flooring products are Europe and North America. The majority of our investments will be used for the upgrading of our veneer plants in Souvans, France which will specialise in the production of thick-cut flooring lamellas," said Mr Danzer.

"In addition, we are investing in the expansion of the existing flooring capacity in our veneer plant in Melnik, Czech Republic and have started 2016 with deck layer production in the Danzer veneer plants in the US," added Mr Danzer.

In 2015, Danzer produced approximately one million m2 of sliced hardwood lamellas in its plant in the Czech Republic – the largest volume, around 85% of the volume, in European Oak, followed by American Walnut and European Ash.

With the capacity additions that have now been decided by the supervisory board, Danzer plans to produce around 3.8 million m2 of hardwood deck layers per year by the end of 2017 in European and North American species.

For years Danzer has been working on developing its own machines for wood processing including its resource-efficient slicing machines.
The big advantage of sliced lamellas compared to sawn ones, says Danzer, is the significantly better utilisation of the wood resource.

With knives, the company can slice the three-millimeter thick wooden lamellas virtually without any raw material loss, while the saw blade generates up to 50% sawdust during manufacturing.

Danzer has already saved hundreds of truckloads of sawdust from the valuable hardwood resource in 2015.

The company also continues to further optimise its technologies to increase the yield of the resource hardwood. This includes the so-called curve-saw technology.

"We are one of the first sawmills in the hardwood industry to install a curve saw at our plant in Bradford, US. This allows the production of flat boards from swept logs – as they often occur in nature – thereby increasing the yield," explains Hans-Joachim Danzer.

The same applies to the scanning technology from Danzer. It will be used in the future for both optimising the veneer and lumber production.