Altholztag 2018 – Waste wood industry meets in Frankfurt

The German Waste Wood Association once again recorded a high number of participants with its conference programme. The Waste Wood Ordinance, titanium dioxide, technology and country reports attracted more than 140 participants to Frankfurt.

Under the motto “The Future of Waste Wood”, the annual Waste Wood Day of the Federal Association of Waste Wood Processors and Recyclers (BAV) took place in Frankfurt am Main on 20 September 2018.

The conference and the evening event of the waste wood federation led more than 140 guests to the Hessian metropolis. In addition to the well-known market participants, many new players were to be found in the ranks of the participants. Dieter Uffmann, Chairman of the Board of the BAV, sees this as a sign of a growing desire for networking and the need for information in times of changing framework conditions. “The Altholztag is the most important lecture and networking event in the industry. The high number of visitors confirms that we have once again hit the nerve of the industry with our programme this year”.

Jochen Kamm, Dieffenbacher GmbH, reported on the latest developments in the field of waste wood cleaning in the panel industry. Through the use of sensor and X-ray technology, impurities can be efficiently sorted out from different waste wood fractions, independent of moisture fluctuations or high fines content. This means that waste wood can be used even more efficiently.

In his presentation, Thomas Baldt, ZenRobotics Ltd, illustrated the use of robots and artificial intelligence in waste sorting. This further increases the quality of waste wood sorting. Thanks to the continuous sensor-based monitoring of the waste assortments and the adaptive control software, the robots can achieve a sorting purity of 98 percent.

Elmar Sittner, an independent insurance consultant, spoke about the fire insurance. Sittner pointed out that recycling plants are difficult to insure due to the risk assessment. In his lecture he pointed out which strategies are possible, in order to make insurance protection possible and to keep this affordable.

Dr. Annette Ochs, Verband der deutschen Kreislauf- und Ressourcenwirtschaft (BDE), informed the participants about the planned European reclassification of titanium dioxide as a carcinogenic substance. The classification would have considerable effects on the recycling of waste wood. Waste wood containing titanium dioxide could in the worst case be classified as hazardous waste. BAV and BDE are against classification as a carcinogenic substance. The outcome of the proceedings is still open.

Dr. Thomas Fack, Chairman of the Waste Wood Ordinance Working Group at the BAV, reported on the amendment process started for the Waste Wood Ordinance and presents the five demands of the BAV position paper on the amendment of the Waste Wood Ordinance: These include the retention of the four waste wood categories as well as the inclusion of process-accompanying sampling procedures. The BAV is also committed to ensuring that in future both recycling methods, material and energetic, will continue to be recognised as high quality.

Dr. Holger Weimar, Thünen Institute, presented the project “Rohstoffmonitoring Holz” and the associated surveys on the production, processing and recycling of waste wood in Germany. In 2016, the market volume for waste wood in 2016 was 7.7 million tonnes. In addition to market-specific data
Dr. Weimar also describes the recycling routes and their development. Especially in the area of material use, there are signs of an increased use of waste wood.

Sylvain Laurent, from the French recycling association FEDEREC, presented the special features of the waste wood stream in France. In France, around 6.5 million tonnes of waste wood are collected annually. 31 percent is recycled for energy and 38 percent for materials. 31% of the waste wood is still dumped, explains Laurent. The amount of waste wood collected is growing annually by up to 6 percent due to the French furniture take-back systems.

Julia Turner, Wood Recyclers Association (WRA), outlines the waste wood market in Great Britain. In the coming years, the island state will change from an exporter of waste wood to an importer. The WRA is therefore striving for a landfill ban for waste wood in the UK in order to exploit unused potential. The state Fire Prevention Plan has a negative effect on timber construction, and the English equivalent to the Waste Wood Ordinance, the “Classifying waste wood from mixed waste wood sources: RPS 207”, which is due to come into force from 2019, still has important regulatory gaps in the area of dangerous woods.

Mario Montevirgen, Falkenbergs Returflis AB, highlighted political and economic factors influencing the waste wood market in Sweden and Europe. In his opinion, the European market will be mainly influenced by the expansion of additional combustion capacities and new wood-based products.

The date for the next waste wood day (Altholztag) has already been set. It will be 19. September 2019 in Munich. Further information on the upcoming dates can be found at:

The BAV – Bundesverband der Altholzaufbereiter und -verwerter e.V. (Federal Association of Waste Wood Processors and Recyclers) organises all interest groups in the waste wood industry. The association currently represents 87 companies from the fields of processing, material and energy recovery, mainly from Germany, but also from Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands. Netherlands Great Britain and Sweden.

Schedule overview

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