Kiri wood – a demanded raw material with many positive properties
Kiri wood (Paulownia wood) from professional plantations has become a highly demanded raw material in the timber industry in recent years. Kiri wood has been used in the Asian region for centuries. Due to its advantageous material properties and its wide range of applications, demand and distribution have also increased sharply in other parts of the world in recent years.
Kiri wood properties at a glance
With a weight of about 250 kg/m³, Kiri is lighter than most woods. By comparison, oak weighs about 770 kg/m³, beech 720 kg/m³, pine 480 and spruce 450 kg/m³.
Due to its honeycomb cell structure, Kiri is very strong and stable in relation to its weight.
High dimensional stability
Kiri wood is characterized by extremely low swelling and shrinkage behavior. Drying shrinkage from fiber saturation to equilibrium moisture content at 20/65: tangential: 2.46%, radial: 0.69%.
Only 0.09 W/mK. Kiri stores a lot of air in its vacuoles and therefore insulates more than twice as well as oak or beech.
Tests over several months by leading German material testing intitute have shown: the durability of Kiri wood is classified by EN 113 2 (2016) / EN 350 (2020) in class 1v (very durable)
First-class care of Kiri trees during growth allows for a completely knot-free assortment. The delicate grain and pleasantly smooth feel make it attractive for many applications.
Easy to process
Kiri does not splinter and is easy to process both manually and by machine. It absorbs glazes and varnishes well and is very easy to glue.
Kiri wood offers a wide range of applications
The wood of the Kiri tree is suitable for the production of sawn lumber as well as for numerous high-quality wood-based materials. In addition to the production of glue-laminated panels and blockboards, Kiri wood offers excellent material properties for the manufacture of rotary veneer materials such as plywood. Due to its material properties, Kiri wood is mainly used in the Mobility, Construction and Lifestyle sectors.
Areas of application here include:
Ship and boat building, surfboards, model airplanes and gliders, caravan construction
Ceilings, stairs, windows, modular buildings and tiny houses, wooden facades, constructions for trade fairs, events and stages
Furniture, home accessories such as vases and bowls, garden furniture, packaging and storage containers
High demand with rising prices
In recent years, the demand for wood as a raw material has risen continuously. The growing world population, new areas of application, but also the trend towards more ecological living are driving demand. Particularly with regard to climate protection and intensive research projects around wood as a CO2-neutral material, wood is replacing plastics, but also cement and steel in many areas.
At the same time, supply is becoming scarcer. The global forest area continues to decrease every year. More and more forest areas are either being completely protected or are subject to stricter regulations regarding timber extraction. As a result, the volume of wood available on the market is steadily decreasing. This trend is reinforced in many countries by increasingly strict import regulations for wood from non-certified sources, such as the European Timber Trade Regulation. Also, due to global political trade restrictions, the European market is no longer supplied by one of the previously most important wood suppliers.
Due to the increasing demand and at the same time decreasing supply, prices increased continuously and partly by leaps and bounds in the past years.
From the conventional afforestation of mixed forests – which is important and should be promoted – significant timber yields can only be expected in periods of 50 to 80 years. Kiri wood, as a fast-growing plantation wood, offers other possibilities here: In short periods of time, Kiri trees can produce large quantities of high-quality lumber and other wood-based materials for the processing industry. Also due to this suitability, strong price increases have also been recorded for Kiri wood in recent years. According to experts, this trend will continue for the foreseeable future.
Do you want to sell your Kiri logs?
Should you be able to offer Kiri roundwood, please feel free to contact the buyers of our sister company KIRITEC. KIRITEC, a company of the WeGrow Group, has already been established for several years as a wholesaler for high-quality Kiri sawn timber from sustainable plantation management in Germany, Switzerland and Austria.