Wood Tariffs and Their Impact on Your Business

The recent tariff increase and U.S. Customs crackdown on wood product exports from China are two of the hot issues in our industry. Some believe these recent actions benefit domestic manufacturing, others are skeptical. Here’s what you need to know!


Antidumping and Countervailing Action (AD/CVD)

“Dumping” describes the practice of importing products at prices below cost. U.S. Customs assesses additional duties on these items to level the playing field for U.S.-based manufacturers. In March 2019, the U.S. Department of Commerce opened an AD/CVD investigation into whether wooden cabinets, vanities and components made in China are unfairly subsidized and imported for less than fair value.

A petition filed by the American Kitchen Cabinet Alliance (AKCA), incited this investigation. The AKCA accused China of unfair trade practices such as mislabeling imports to undercut domestic cabinet manufacturers. The government investigation subsequently revealed shipments of hardwood plywood panels misclassified as ready-to-assemble kitchen cabinetry.

For some, the investigation and recent tariff increase (from 10 percent to 25 percent) are positive actions that support the health of domestic manufacturers. Others argue buying will simply shift to Mexico, Vietnam and other countries.

Woodworking Network recently asked professional cabinetmakers, furniture manufacturers, and other users of imported wood materials or components how tariffs are affecting their business. Eighty-five percent said increased tariffs on Chinese wood products have caused or will cause them to raise their prices. 

When asked, “Why not buy from domestic sources?" some respondents expressed dissatisfaction with American-made products. We invite manufacturers who would like to support domestic manufacturing to try Timber Products composite panels, veneers and decorative overlays.

Timber Products Company’s integrated manufacturing practices ensure consistent quality. We do all our own lay-ups, sanding, laminating and finishing. By engineering everything in-house and engaging with customers directly, we give each job the expert attention it deserves from start to finish. ​

In addition to producing high-quality wood products, Timber Products ensures your projects are Title VI compliant (unlike wood products from China). Our products, including hardwood plywood, particle board, and MDF, meet or exceed the stringent CARB Phase 2 emission standards for formaldehyde emissions from composite wood products. Our hardwood plywood products are eligible for LEED credit support projects and all our facilities are CARB-exempt.

Whenever a state or federal regulation changes, we work hard to keep our products and services beyond compliant. We invite you to sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date on industry news and trends and contact one of our wood product experts with any questions you may have.

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