Furniture World News Bureau on 06/09/2022
BASF’s Keith Task (L) accepts congratulations from Bill Gollnitz, former PFA President and Technical Program Moderator, on winning the Dr. Herman T. Stone Technical Excellence Award.
The Polyurethane Foam Association (PFA) recently concluded its Spring Meeting, a return to normal for more than 150 sales and marketing professionals, EHS specialists, technologists, contractors and senior executives who gathered at Vinoy Renaissance in St. Petersburg, Florida. .
Attendees heard presentations on key industry issues including supply chain challenges, recycling, regulations and end-user market forecasts.
The PFA Industry Issues session examined the full scope of the polyurethane value chain, from research priorities and raw material sourcing to the challenges faced by foam users in the polyurethane industries. automobiles, office furniture, carpet cushions and footwear.
The following afternoon, technical articles covered achievements in foam recycling, odor and microbial control, alternative catalysts, block geometry and the use of data science to guide production parameters.
“Our industry has weathered the pandemic better than many others, but we have all appreciated the opportunity to see each other in person and continue to get back to normal,” said Russ Batson, executive director of PFA.
Batson noted that more than a dozen new companies have joined PFA in the past year, which he called a vote of confidence in the association and its pivotal role in the industry. “To stay abreast of technical developments, regulatory challenges, sourcing strategies, industry-sponsored and government-funded research, companies really need to be involved in the association.”
Keynote speaker Dr. Brian Domitrovic discussed supply-side economics and provided an overview of the current economic situation in the United States Domitrovic, former professor of economic history at Sam Houston State University, co- written with Larry Kudlow JFK and the Reagan Revolution: A Secret History of American Prosperity. Early registrants at the PFA meeting received copies of the book, which Domitrovic signed for attendees. Domitrovic argued that the United States today funnels too much talent and money into finance, health care and education, and not enough into manufacturing.
BASF’s Keith Task won the Dr. Herman Stone Technical Excellence Award as his presentation, “Digitizing and Predictive Modeling of Polyurethane Data via Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence,” was voted best by attendees of the technical program.
“Our technical presenters covered a range of topics this year,” noted Bill Gollnitz, former PFA president and technical program moderator. “It was refreshing to see a mix of new faces along with industry veterans sharing innovations with the flexible polyurethane foam industry.”
About the Polyurethane Foam Association
The Polyurethane Foam Association is a trade association founded in 1980 to help educate foam users, related industries and other stakeholders. PFA provides facts on environmental, health and safety issues and technical information on the performance of flexible polyurethane foam (FPF) in consumer and industrial products. FPF is used as a key comfort element in most upholstered furniture and mattresses, as well as automotive seats, carpet cushions, packaging and many other applications.