Go on Tour with MMPAJuly 11th, 2014 by DWM Magazine
The Moulding and Millwork Producers Association (MMPA) invites the entire industry to learn more about the moulding market, and tour no less than nine companies when it hosts its Industry Wide Event and Plant Tours, September 7-10.
The event will be held at the Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square in Lancaster, Pa.
Tim Dykstra, MMPA member, and vice president of sales, trim and moulding, for Royal Moulding, says he has attended a few of the tours last year and says it’s definitely worth the trip no matter how long you have been in the industry.
“It’s very enlightening to get into plants of different kinds,” he says. He adds that even if you are touring a cabinet company, for example, but you don’t offer those products, there are still lessons to be learned.
“All [companies on our tour] use wood or some type of composite materials and supply pieces and parts,” he says. “You gain new insights that you can apply to your products and services. There is a lot of hidden talent … these companies are really dialed into what they do best and we can learn from them. It’s about getting that next idea.”
So no matter what product you offer, there are insights to be gained.
“Every part of the event is slightly different,” adds Dykstra. “We see it as understanding the applications and uses of moulding and then look for what our products can offer in that same space … Our components differently answer the call.”
For Dykstra he says one of the most valuable things to be gained from the meeting is the market update. “The building trades are definitely regionally driven,” he says. “For example, there may be issues affecting certain areas which may offer an opportunity to other companies in the association.”
Attendees also have the opportunity to hear the latest economic forecast, and this year the keynote speaker is Dr. David Crowe, chief economist and senior vice president at the National Association of Home Builders. Crowe will give a state of the industry address with insights to the future and product trends.
The event also allows companies to interact with suppliers such as Willamette Valley Co. Paul Erickson, technical sales manager and MMPA member, says its’ a great venue for if you are coming out with a new product or new technology and allows attendees to view these enhancements as well.
MMPA held the first Industry Wide Event and Plant Tours in 2013 in California, so moved to the East Coast this year.
“We are trying to branch out and attract another audience,” says Erickson. “The West Coast is pretty we’ll established in this industry. We are trying to alternate these tours so we can attract a broader audience.”
He adds, “Hopefully now that the industry is back to a more decent economic climate companies can invest the time in an event such as this.”
Registration is now open on the MMPA website and the full agenda is posted as well. Plant tours will include: Kountry Kraft Manufacturing, Northway Industries, Plain & Fancy Kitchens Manufacturing, Signature Cabinets, Signature Companies, Universal Forest Products, Versatek Enterprises, Wayneco, Weaber Lumber and York Caskets.