IWF 2014: More than a Woodworking Trade Show
By Matt Shumake | Posted: 08/05/2014 11:32AM
Oscar Einzig The International Woodworking Fair (IWF), North America’s largest woodworking technology trade show, will return to the Georgia World Congress Center on August 20–23 with approximately 900 exhibitors showcasing new design trends, software developments, manufacturing innovations and safety solutions. The event will be sponsored by the Woodworking Machinery Manufacturers of America (WMMA) and the Woodworking Machinery Industry Association (WMIA).
“More than a trade show,” WMMA Executive Director Fred Stringfellow says, “It is also a gathering of the entire industry for networking and education.”
Stringfellow says the WMMA, which works to enhance the competitive position of domestic machinery manufacturers, has long supported IWF. He adds that 115 of the WMMA’s member companies (about 85% of the WMMA) will be exhibiting at IWF 2014.
Riccardo Azzoni, WMIA executive vice president, says 220 companies will be exhibiting for the first time. Approximately 80 exhibitors, he adds, are WMIA members.
A Global Standard
The WMIA, which works to keep the North American woodworking industry in touch with global technology, services and information resources, will host an open session on its new Technical Advisory Group (TAG). The group, Azzoni says, is currently operating under the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to modify the latest machinery standards in safety, electrical, mechanical and guarding.
“Many standards available in Europe under the ISO [International Organization for Standardization] are currently not available in the US,” Azzoni says.
“The goal is to harmonize them with existing U.S. standards or to create new standards that are not in the books right now,” he adds.
Members of the Technical Advisory Group include professionals from Pittsburgh State University and associations such as the Cabinet Makers Association (CMA), the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association (KCMA) and the Architectural Woodwork Institute (AWI).
Azzoni says he is looking forward to bringing more organizations into the TAG and developing new standards, which will help to prevent accidents and create safer equipment.
The open session will take place on Wednesday, August 20 from 3 – 4:30 p.m. Speakers from the ISO and WMIA will present the progress and goals of the TAG.
What Else Is New?
In addition to the WMIA’s initiative to unite global standards, Azzoni says IWF 2014 will feature a Qualified Dealer Program designed for regional distributors. The program will allow WMMA and WMIA members to enter the show floor a day in advance, providing distributors with the opportunity to locate suppliers and learn about new offerings.
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