Brussels, Belgium – Europe's flexible foam producers still are suffering from supply disruptions, despite TDI plants restarting after shutdowns, according to EuroPUR, the European flexible polyurethane foam producers' association.
Both of the European TDI makers that lost production in October have restarted, EuroPUR said in a 15 Dec statement. However, foamers still are on allocation as forces majeures have not been lifted.
MDI foamers are in a better position, and both prices and supply are reverting towards November/December 2019 levels, the association said.
Demand for PU foam remains strong in Europe, especially in the furniture and bedding sectors.
"(This) has really been a roller coaster year for the foam industry," EuroPUR president Bart ten Brink said.
"Overall, we can be glad – compared to many industries out there – that demand is still strong, especially in the comfort sector. However, I have never seen such a scramble for raw materials in terms of availability and price instability. I really encourage the supply chain to think about security of supply.
"I sincerely hope that buffers of raw materials can be built up ... so that we can start 2021 in a better, more stable supply position."