American Hardwood Trade Symposium

27 May 2023

On 16th May Peter Clayton, Environmental officer, and John Sowerby, North American Hardwood purchaser, attended the American Hardwood Trade Symposium in London, hosted by the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) and Timber Development UK (TDUK). The event was an opportunity to share knowledge and network with over 200 members of the hardwood community, from American hardwood experts and suppliers to UK and EU importers, traders and merchants. The focus of the meeting was to discuss the current trading patterns of American hardwood and the potential upcoming impact of EU Deforestation Free Regulation (EUDR).

The consensus was that trade has been difficult recently and the peaks to lows have been a onetime event. Such volatility in the market was tough for everyone to manage and hopefully as we approach the second half of the year more stable trading will return. Another key discussion at the meeting was the impact of the decline in trade between North American and China and how America is intending on becoming less dependant on a single market.

The EUDR will come into effect as of 2025. It currently remains unclear how exporters and importers will comply with this new legislation and whilst the UK market currently doesn’t fall under it’s purview, we will of course get involved and eventually enforce our own version. For now it’s a waiting game and we will be keeping a close eye.