Montréal, Canada— The Montréal Wood Convention 2023, a premier event for the wood industry in North America, took place from April 18 to 20, 2023, at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montréal. The convention attracted 1100 participants from around the world and featured 110 booths showcasing the latest trends, technologies, and products by the biggest companies in the industry. A record number of participants for the event.
In addition to the booths, the convention hosted a series of seminars, discussions, and panel sessions featuring leading industry experts. The keynote speaker Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, an NFL player for the New York Jets, was undoubtly the star of the event. He charmed the participants with his journey from professional football to medical school, and discussed the importance of leadership, perseverance, and adaptability.
In addition to the keynote speech and CEO-Panel, the convention featured a variety of other events and activities with networking opportunities and an industry seminar on the economy and markets.
According to Sven Gustavsson, the event director, the Montréal Wood Convention 2023 was a success that provided opportunity for the wood industry to come together and share ideas, knowledge, and innovations. “We are delighted that people enjoyed such a diverse range of seminars and discussions at this year’s convention,” said Gustavsson. “The presence of so many important players in the industry is another proof of the relevance and necessity of this annual meeting for the wood industry in North America and worldwide”.
The forest industry is a major contributor to the Canadian economy with a GDP contribution of nearly $20 billion (2012 chained dollars), representing 8% of Canada’s manufacturing sector. With exports of more than $46 billion in 2022, the sector has a strong positive trade balance (close to $30 billion). In terms of softwood lumber, Canada remains the world’s 2th largest producer and the 2th largest exporter. The forest industry provided 2021 more than 210,000 direct jobs (foresters, scientists, engineers, computer specialists, technicians, and skilled workers) and is still a pillar of economic development for many municipalities from coast to coast.
“The Montréal Wood Convention reconfirms its role as the key Canadian hub for producers, wholesalers, and retailers of wood products. We are delighted with the record participation from the United States and Canada, as well as the significant presence from overseas markets,” explains Sylvain Labbé, President and CEO of the Quebec Wood Export Bureau (QWEB) and a member of the organizing committee.
The Montréal Wood Convention has continued to grow in popularity since its inception, despite a hiatus due to the global pandemic of COVID-19. Each year, the varied program and the quality of participating companies reflect the latest market trends and the many changes in the industry.
The event, which has its roots in the Canadian Lumbermen’s Association (CLA) Convention, first held in 1908, was revamped and restarted in 2013 by four industry associations in Eastern Canada, the Maritime Lumber Bureau (MLB), the Ontario Forest Industry Association (OFIA), the Québec Forest Industry Council (QFIC) and the Québec Wood Export Bureau (QWEB).