PLIB is the only Western U.S. lumber grading agency to be
recognized and accredited for CE Marking for lumber by one of the approved
European Notified Bodies.
CE marking, which has been required for a range products
(such as medical devices and cell phones) since 1993, is used by the 27 member
states of the European Union (EU) as well as by Iceland, Norway, Switzerland
and Liechtenstein as an indicator that products sold in those countries meet
the legal requirements for those products. Beginning January 1, 2012, most EU countries
will require all structurally graded lumber entering the country to bear a CE
Mark. Originally slated for
implementation in July 2007, implementation of the CE marking requirement for
lumber has been postponed several times to January 2012. A number of Canadian
lumber producers have already begun CE marking and will continue to do so, as
many customers are requesting it.
(NOTE: Unlike the
majority of EU countries, the United Kingdom has announced structural lumber
entering the UK is not required to bear the CE Mark until July 2013. Any such
lumber entering the UK still must comply with the standards outlined in EN
14081-1 (the standard behind CE marking for lumber), it just need not be marked
as such until the later date.)
In 2010, European markets represented a relatively small
percentage of total exports (U.S.) in terms of quantity. Those markets tend to
demand higher value non-structural products, such as vertical grain fir, used
in high-end window and door manufacturing, along with interior moulding and
millwork. The CE Marking requirement currently applies only to structural grade
lumber, which represents a smaller share of the European export market.
PLIB currently has four member mills that have been issued
CE grade marks and is prepared to assist any other member mills (U.S. or
Canada) to achieve certification before the January 2012 deadline.
For more information or to subscribe for CE Marking, please call us at 253-835-3344.