The cost of materials and feedstocks typically supplied to furniture manufacturers has risen noticeably over the last 12 months, according to the BFM – and although they are beginning to ease according to official figures, average input costs still exceed 4%.
According to the BFM's commodity price tracker, fabric fibres including polyester, acrylic, nylon and wool all rose by between +5% and +14% within the last 12 months.
The price of TDI, a feedstock for foam, increased again in the month of March, but the cost of polyol flexible, another principle foam chemical, remained fairly stable. Due to the strengthening pound against the Euro, the combined value of these chemicals helped to lessen the annual rise, still remaining in excess of +15%.
The full findings are revealed in the BFM's updated and newly sourced commodity pricing system, which now allows members to review price movements in a clear, graphic format.
Mike Dimond, the BFM's director of employment and membership affairs, says: "Our special report has revealed a number of interesting findings. For example, with a relatively strong world growth you may expect demand to increase as well as prices, which is evident in our summary for many items.
"Leather hide prices fell by between -10% and -26% over the year depending on the animal, and the cost of cotton and viscose also declined. Under the new system we track weekly prices of more than 100 staple and recycled fibres and filament yarns, and the plan for the near future is to expand the report beyond textiles.
"It is proving to be an excellent tool for our members as they provide an indication of trends where, if needed, comparisons can be made - for example, the prices of birch logs in Estonia compared to Finland."
The BFM tracks prices of TDI, polyol flexible, MDI, logs, veneers, composites, soft and hard woods, fibres, leather hides, packaging and wire. The full report is available to BFM members.