Extraordinary challenges, but LIGNA returns this year with a renewed focus

Two-thirds of long-standing exhibitors now confirmed for flagship trade fair in Hannover.

Sat 28 Jan 23


Despite a series of extraordinary challenges, including rising energy prices, material shortages, Covid and economic uncertainties in many markets, the woodworking and wood processing industry is in good spirits with the return this year of the LIGNA Trade Fair in Hannover, Germany.

The flagship trade fair will run from May 15 to 19. Around two-thirds of LIGNA’s long-standing exhibitors have already confirmed their participation for 2023, with 75% of the available exhibition space already occupied

“After consulting the market, LIGNA and our partner VDMA have decided to continue the focus topics originally planned for the cancelled event in 2021 with the launch of LIGNA 2023,” Stephanie Wagner, head of LIGNA, said.

Stephanie Wagner, new head of LIGNA, with Hendrik Engelking who is responsible for the overall portfolio of the trade fair.

“They are still highly relevant and have even gained momentum in terms of importance and will play a key role in determining the development of our industry in the coming years, Ms Wagner said.

“We’re looking forward to finally bringing these topics to life, live on-site in Hannover together with our exhibitors.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated this development even further, hence the focus topic of ‘Woodworking Transformation’ is on the agenda for LIGNA 2023.

“With connected machines, human-machine interaction, IoT platforms, building information, modelling or augmented and virtual reality, current and future developments in digitalisation along the entire value chain will be addressed. In addition to that, further topics include wood-flow control, robotics, logistics, standardisation, surface treatment and cloud-based data management.”

Ms Wagner said the importance of ‘prefab building brocesses’, thus wood in construction, continued to grow, both for purely wooden buildings and for mixed wood structures.

“This leads to new requirements for efficiency and prefabrication,” she said.

At the trade show, visitors will be able to experience the entire process, from planning to machining and processing to logistics in the plant as well as to and on the construction site. This will also involve solutions for the currently strained supply chain situation.

“In addition, the harmonisation of the aforementioned processes with general trends, such as elementisation and standardisation, multi-storey timber construction, hybrid buildings, modular construction and serial production will be addressed,” Ms Wagner said.

“As the most important renewable raw material, wood forms a central basis of the bio-economy on the way from an econom based on fossil, mineral raw materials to one that relies on renewable resources.

“On display will be development lines of the wood-based bioeconomy and technological innovations for responsible use of natural resources, as well as process technologies around the shaping processes of chemically digested wood fibers.

“This positive trend underscores the importance of LIGNA for the woodworking community as a key networking hub and platform for development and innovation,” Dr Bernhard Dirr, managing director of VDMA, said.

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